–Salary for attending school, III

The debt hawks are to economics as the creationists are to biology.

The following article reinforces the posts, Salary for attending school and Salary for attending school, 2nd paper:
U.S. goes from leading to lagging in young college graduates

By Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, July 22, 2010; 6:07 AM

The United States has fallen from first to 12th in the share of adults ages 25 to 34 with postsecondary degrees, according to a new report from the College Board.

Canada is now the global leader in higher education among young adults, with 55.8 percent of that population holding an associate degree or better as of 2007, the year of the latest international ranking. The United States sits 11 places back, with 40.4 percent of young adults holding postsecondary credentials.

The report, to be presented Thursday to Capitol Hill policymakers, is backed by a commission of highly placed educators who have set a goal for the United States to reclaim world leadership in college completion — and attain a 55 percent completion rate — by 2025.

The campaign mirrors President Obama’s quest to reclaim world leadership in college graduates by 2020, although it gives the country five more years to get there. The Commission on Access, Admissions and Success in Higher Education set its goal in December 2008, seven months before Obama’s American Graduation Initiative.

“I don’t think what we’re saying and what the president’s saying are that different,” said Gaston Caperton, president of the College Board, the New York nonprofit agency responsible for the SAT and AP tests.

The United States ranks somewhat higher, sixth, among all nations when older adults are added to the equation, according to the report, which Caperton said would be the first of many annual reports charting progress toward the 2025 goal.

But the report focuses more heavily on younger adults, who are feared to be the first generation in the modern era that will be less well-educated than their parents.

Educational attainment has risen gradually among 25- to 34-year-olds in recent years, according to census data, with the share holding associate degrees or better rising from 38.1 percent in 2000 to 41.6 percent in 2008, the latest figure available.

The report is tailored to state leaders and ranks states by college completion among young adults. The District of Columbia ranks higher than any state, with 62.2 percent of 25- to 34-year-olds holding postsecondary degrees. Maryland ranks 12th among states, with a 38.6 percent completion rate; Virginia ranks 17th, with a 36.5 percent rate.

The commission is urging state and national leaders to pursue a 10-part “action agenda,” which recommends such initiatives as universal pre-kindergarten for low-income families, better college counseling and dropout prevention, and streamlined college admissions, all of which might raise college completion rates. The group is led by William E. Kirwan, chancellor of the University System of Maryland.

“We have a real, objective way every year to look at every state and see how they’re doing,” Caperton said, “and we’re doing this with legislators all over the country.”

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

No nation can tax itself into prosperity

13 thoughts on “–Salary for attending school, III

  1. I don’t know if this speech is true, but do these comments add anything to diagnosing the problem of education these days?


    If our educational system is meant to create better workers, then Rodger, your idea on paying students just might create students who work to pass a test for a paycheck. And with that, they’ll understand more that once they leave school, they’ll mimic what they’ve learned in school, that is working for a paycheck. But did we further our human experience on earth? Did we create people who think? Do these worker/students end up creating new technology, ideas, our future? Or did we just make the corporatist wealthier on the backs of these workers?


  2. People attend school for many reasons. Some reasons you may consider “good”; some you may consider “bad.” The more people who attend school, the more “good” reasons will emerge.

    Rodger Malcolm Mitchell


  3. I used to think that this was like the 80/20 rule where one needs to be mindful that we don’t create policy “fixing” the 20 percent while likewise dragging down the 80 percent.

    In many inner-city schools though these numbers are reversed. The problem kids are the 80 percent. And these kids end up dropping out in their later years of school which then allow the 20 percent who really want to learn to continue without distraction. By paying students to graduate, are we just ensuring that this 80 percent of the population can stick around and thus drag down the learning capability of the 20%?

    Seems to me that just making a kid in the 80% show up and get paid doesn’t do enough. Maybe payroll and FICA tax breaks can be given to employers who employ this 80% while mixing in the three-R’s during the day. Teach a skill, not words to memorize for a test for which the kid would fail anyway.

    The 80% that don’t want to think and just get paid will learn to be like rats waiting for their pellets.

    The other 20% can go on and learn how to think and ask important questions that later they wish to solve.


    1. The educational problems in America are multifaceted. Any single proposed solution will be criticized, because it doesn’t solve the whole problem.

      In my opinion, encouraging more people to attend school longer, by whatever means, will help America. Yes, some people will sit in class like a box of rocks, but others will learn, and the country will benefit. We need more college and advanced degree graduates to advance in the 21st century.

      By the way, this relates to the question of the GAP between rich and poor.

      Rodger Malcolm Mitchell


      1. “some people will sit in class like a box of rocks”

        If only they would. Instead these problem kids pull down their pants in class, talk back to teachers, threaten principals with violence, deal drugs, and are anything but “a box of rocks”. Paying students to act this way won’t make the system any better.


          1. I don’t have statistics, just anecdotal evidence from a few teachers, one who used to work in Chicago Public Schools, now at a Charter School, and others who have had children in inner-city schools.

            In this 2007 NPR segment, we learn that only 25% of Detroit’s Freshman class will eventually graduate from high school.


            What do you think the classroom setting looks like? Take a trip to Robeson High School in Chicago and see for yourself.



  4. One more question. In this report: http://completionagenda.collegeboard.org/reports, Canada has 55% of their 25-34 year-olds with an associate degree or higher. Whereas the US has 40.4%.

    Two Questions:
    1) Why the difference between the US and Canada?
    2) Does Canada’s increase of degreed population mean anything? Is their income higher? Do they have a comparable advantage in business, technology, science? If so, how, and what measurements are used to determine this?


  5. Bloomberg: Stripper Finds Degree Profitable for Goldman Wasn’t Worth It


    Video: http://www.bloomberg.com/video/62044940/

    In the video we learn the problem. These for profit (or really any school) charge nearly 6 figures for a degree that is for a low paying job leaving the student in lots of debt. So, does the government paying 100% of the degree make the degree any better? No. This girl would still be a stripper. But at least she’d have more money in her g-string since she wouldn’t be paying the debt.


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