A Bailout Won’t Fix College Costs. Here Are 3 Ways Congress Can Do Better

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In Heritage Impact

Lindsey Burke

The Obama administration’s taxpayer bailout of student loan borrowers does nothing to change the cost of education, Heritage Foundation expert Lindsey Burke points out.

“After all,” she asks, “why should colleges reduce tuition rates if the government keeps increasing student-loan subsidies?”

In testimony last week before a Senate committee, Burke condemned the current higher-education borrowing system and called on Congress to take action:

  1. Stop the higher education spending spree;
  2. Employ fair-value accounting to understand the cost of federal student loans; and
  3. Decouple federal financing from accreditation

Read her whole testimony here.

Do you think the solution to soaring college costs is more subsidies for education?

A New Way to Fund Your Child’s Education


In Heritage Work

Heritage Foundation experts Lindsey Burke and Brittany Corona explain the value of Education Savings Accounts, which are being pioneered in Arizona as a new way for parents to fund their child’s education.

Families can use ESAs to pay for private school tuition, online learning and private tutoring. Parents are even able to roll over unused funds from year to year, and can even roll those funds into a college savings account.

Early data from Arizona show that not only are parents considering opportunity costs — whether they’re getting good value for their education spending — they’re also seizing the opportunity to tailor their child’s educational experience.

This is an important innovation that puts parents, not bureaucrats, in charge of education spending. A recent in-depth Heritage report explains how states can set up Education Savings Accounts.

Do you think parents should have more control over how education funds are spent?

Washington Post Reports on New Heritage Fellows

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In Heritage Impact

Nina Owcharenko

Nina Owcharenko

Three Heritage Foundation scholars were recently awarded named fellowships. The Washington Post reports on the news:

The Heritage Foundation has announced that Nina Owcharenko has been named the first Preston A. Wells Jr. Fellow in Health Policy.

“This is well-deserved recognition for Nina’s leadership in the effort to repeal Obamacare and move America to patient-centered, market-based health care,” said Heritage President Edwin J. Feulner in a statement. “Dick Wells believed it was people and organizations, not the federal government, that can solve America’s political ills.”

. . .

The Heritage Foundation has also recently announced that education policy scholar Lindsey Burke has been named the Will Skillman Fellow in Education and that Nicolas Loris , an economist at the think tank, has been named the Herbert and Joyce Morgan Fellow.

What’s the Truth About Student Loan Interest Rates?


In Heritage Work

Harvard College. Photo: Flickr/Matthew Boyer

Should taxpayers subsidize students attending Harvard? Photo: Flickr/Matthew Boyer

As President Obama travels the country urging continued federal subsidies for higher education, The Heritage Foundation’s Lindsey Burke weighs in on the issue in an interview with the Washington Post:

Keeping interest rates artificially low will fail to drive down college costs in the long run. Colleges will once again be able to increase costs, and students with easy access to low-interest loans will once again be able to pay. The Obama administration has significantly increased federal involvement in the student loan industry, effectively nationalizing student lending through language buried in Obamacare, by continuing to increase federal subsidies, and by “forgiving” student loans altogether after 20 years on the backs of taxpayers. But these policies only exacerbate the college cost crisis, continuing a vicious cycle whereby college costs rise in tandem with ever-increasing federal subsidies.

Read all Heritage research on higher education here.

What do you think the federal government’s role should be in higher education?

Lindsey Burke’s Passion for Education

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In Other Work of Note

Heritage's Lindsey Burke speaks on a National School Choice Week panel. Photo: Chas Geer

Heritage's Lindsey Burke, left, speaks on a National School Choice Week panel. Photo: Chas Geer

Lindsey Burke, The Heritage Foundation’s Will Skillman Fellow in Education, shows no hesitation about her passion and dedication to education policy.

“My hope is to inform policy in a way that empowers  every family to have  access to a customized educational experience for their child, where they can tailor their child’s learning options to meet the child’s unique needs,” Burke says.

Her teaching experiences have given her a good flavor of what happens in the classroom setting. This helps inform her perspective as she helps inform state and  federal  education policy.

“There are two overarching principles that guide how we want to see education policy reformed,” Burke explains: Continue Reading »

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