Sunday, September 09, 2007

We're Off To A Bad Start With Promise Grants

Well, that didn't take long.

Friday, Congress passed an anti-accountability bill for college students and by the next day Eastern Kentucky University took its place in line for the gravy train.

RICHMOND, Ky. (AP) -- Eastern Kentucky University officials have revealed a plan to boost enrollment by nearly 5,000 by the year 2020.

The board of regents discussed the "20K2020" plan on Saturday afternoon.

Given our high failure rate for students in our state colleges, it makes little sense to merely throw more money and more students at the same system. Congress is dismantling the student loan system that requires families to consider college costs and replacing it with a massive federal grant program that just needs bodies.

In Kentucky, too many of those bodies are graduating high school unprepared for college work.

It is understandable that a college like EKU would respond to this set of circumstances by making room for thousands more federally-funded students.

But before we bond the billions of dollars necessary to expand our state schools for the coming flood of remedial students, we need to consider the costs to our higher education system when they drop out.