Letter to the New York Times

March 20, 2007

Letters to the Editor
New York Times

To the Editor:

A more demanding high school curriculum accomplishes nothing when the federal government takes away crucial funds from academically prepared students and makes it more expensive to take out loans (“College Aid Plan Widens U.S. Role in High Schools,” Jan. 22). The greatest problem facing high school students and their families in the budget reconciliation bill is that it cuts student loans by an unprecedented $12.7 billion. The bill risks the future stability of the entire student loan program, on which millions of high school students rely to attend and afford the college of their choice.

At a time when America needs more science and math majors, and a better prepared workforce, it is unconscionable that Congress would raid the student loan program to contribute 30 percent of the bill’s entire deficit reduction package. Student loans represent less than half of one percent of all annual federal spending, but they are asked to make the biggest sacrifice of any federal program. The bill also transfers nearly a billion dollars a year in administrative expenses for the Education Department to the fund that supplies grants and work-study for needy students, meaning less money for those who need it the most.

What is the point of funding federal K-12 school improvement programs while increasing financial barriers to higher learning? Congress must stop its raid on student aid.


David L. Warren
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities


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