Financial aid to students has jumped to $226 billion, but the dropout rate is up, too. A new report says basing assistance on college enrollment is not enough. Should it be keyed to graduation? Would requiring more credits make students graduate faster? Can aid be adjusted without penalizing the very people it's designed to help? Also, a new Paul Ryan budget outlines a familiar vision, and Whole Foods market and genetically modified foods.
FROM THIS EPISODE
As House Budget Committee Chair, Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan introduced a new budget today. It target's what Republicans call Big Government, just as Ryan did as last year's losing candidate for the vice presidency. But Ryan calls it an invitation. John Allen is senior Washington correspondent for Politico.
As the gap grows between the rich and the poor in America's evolving economy, financial aid for college is supposed to be a great equalizer, but it's not working out that way. While 70 percent of wealthiest students graduate, just 26 percent of the poorest make it, even with $226 billion in aid for the academically qualified. Dropouts are left with tens of thousands of dollars in student-loan debt, but without diplomas to get good jobs to help pay it off. Is it time to reform student aid so it helps improve future prospects instead of making them worse?
Jason DeParle, New York Times
David Longanecker, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (@wicheEDU)
Barmak Nassirian, independent policy analyst
Stan Jones, Complete College America (@completecollege)
Whole Foods Market has announced plans to become the first US retailer to require labeling of all genetically modified foods sold in its stores. In California, often called America's food basket, the food industry spent millions of dollars last year to defeat a ballot initiative to require the labeling of genetically modified foods. Now Whole Foods will go the way of the European Union. Stephanie Strom, who reports for the New York Times, has more on the possible impact.
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Touching down in fly-over country Dodge City, Kansas and Erie, Pennsylvania may have something in common. That’s just one surprise in “Our Towns,” a new book by James and Deborah Fallows. The veteran Atlantic magazine correspondent and his scholarly wife spent two weeks in each of 25 different cities. Their search for America’s character provides anecdotes, comparisons and distinctions after a journey of 100,000 miles.
Teachers are battling back Teachers are mad as hell in several red states. They’re walking out over cuts in pay and reductions in classroom support. It’s a grass-roots rebellion from West Virginia to Kentucky and Arizona. Will it renew support for the value of public education in a changing economy?
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