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Archive for Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Law skims past core of problem: ever-increasing tuition costs

Youths debate efficacy of college loan legislation

October 9, 2007

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For students planning to apply for college, finding a way to pay for it can be a major hurdle. Part of the process involves taking out loans. These loans carry high interest rates and often leave students in serious debt.

The Democratic Party believes one solution to this problem is to reduce interest rates on loans. Recently, a bill was passed in the House of Representatives that will attempt to fix this problem. According to the article "House Cuts Interest Rate for Some College Loans" in The New York Times, by Diana Jean Schemo, the bill will cut interest rates in half over the next five years and is estimated to cost $6 billion. By cutting interest rates, nothing is being done to help those students who are applying to college, because little is accomplished from cutting interest rates to help with making the initial expenses more affordable. Cutting interest rates causes higher tuition and will benefit only those who have graduated.

According to the same article, statements made by the White House before the bill was voted on stated that higher education should be made more efficient by keeping costs at a minimum. By making student loans more accessible, colleges are left with less incentive to work with the students in keeping tuition rates reasonable and under control. The bill did get bipartisan support, with many Republican House members voting for it. Included in the article were statements made by U.S. Rep. Michael N. Castle, R-Del., who voted for the bill, saying that he believed although the bill only "skimmed the surface" of the issue, it was a step in the right direction.

The solution is not easy. A starting point is making sure colleges keep tuition affordable, not toying with interest rates.

- Junior Casey Maxon is a member of the LHS Young Republicans.

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