Sure the headline merely asks the question—”What would 15% cut mean for state colleges?”—but why is this even a conversation?
Double-digit tuition increases. Class cuts that would make it harder to finish a degree in four years. Enrollment cutbacks that would make it more difficult to get admitted to a state university.
Washington’s public college and university presidents, warning that a hypothetical 15 percent cut to higher education would be devastating to public colleges and universities, are in a standoff with the state Office of Financial Management (OFM) over fiscal planning for the next two years.
Washington’s state colleges and universities have had their funding cut for years. Tuition has skyrocketed. We’re having trouble retaining top professors. We’re already 25,000 degrees a year short of demand. I mean, we either want a state college and university system or we don’t. If we do want a state college and university system then we need to fund it at a level sufficient to support quality, access, and capacity. If we don’t want a state college and university system, then we should just stop pretending, and shut it down already.
But hypothetical conversations about hypothetical 15 percent cuts achieve nothing except making a smaller, say, 5 percent cut more likely. So shut up already about further cuts to higher education, and instead shift the conversation to something useful, like making the case to voters for raising taxes.
The conversation makes people scared about the consequences if higher ed gets cut and encourages the legislature to raise revenue instead of cut. This is a key step in making the case for raising taxes – illustrating the consequences if we don’t.
Dr. Hilarius spews:
It’s the continuing narrative of “government is too big and my taxes are too high” along with the idea that everything should be paid for by user fees (other than the services desired by the deserving few).
Washington State has had a succession of governors who have failed to support public higher education apart from a few tepid remarks that fail to generate any action.
But wait, haven’t we been paying top dollar for university presidents to lobby for their institutions? No, they spend their time wooing private donors in the hope of making up some of the tax shortfall, with the result that education increasingly is beholden to the private sector.
@1 Except they never make the case for raising taxes. Never. At least not seriously. Dems need to start talking about which taxes they are going to raise, and by how much, so that they can set the table for actually, you know, raising taxes.
Roger Rabbit spews:
There will always be a bloc of voters who have no idea what college is for, because they never went to college, and don’t want to pay taxes to educate other people’s children, because their own kids are too stupid or lazy to get into college.
Roger Rabbit spews:
If this keeps up, it’s just a matter of time before our kids will be attending community colleges in China to learn basic job skills they can’t acquire here.
Newsflash: We’re not raising taxes. It will get politicians shitcanned by their constituents, who as it turns out don’t trust you clowns with their money.
It is fun to watch the rending of garments and stylized agony though, please don’t stop that part.
@6: we understand how the prospect of affordable universal higher education would elicit such a response from you.
Very Severe Conservative spews:
I don’t want my taxes raised if it pays for the education of some one else’s kid. There is nothing in that for me.
How can you raise taxes for the good of anything when you have three AM conservative stations, Dori Monson and Fox News screaming to the base that paying taxes is not patriotic, that government can only do bad, government must be destroyed, (except for cops. Cops, and the military are great, so long as they don’t have to pay for the VA )
I’m told by a friend who’s worked at UW for 15+ years and knows all too much about the budgeting that 97% of the UW’s budget is NOT from state money. So a 15% cut would be 15% of 3%, whatever that would be, not 15% from 100%. The UW, at least, is already a private university.