We Pay Twice for a Lousy Job

We’re all familiar with the axiom that anything worth doing is worth doing well, and if you don’t want to do it well, don’t do it at all.

Tuition at California public universities went up 32 percent last year. Last week, California State University raised tuition more than 15 percent, part of which kicks in this January and again next fall. The University of California is voting on an 8 percent increase this week.

Are you aware that over half of all freshmen in the CSU system require remediation in either math or English, or both? According to a 2008 study by Jessica Howell, assistant professor in the Department of Economics at CSUS, “Current estimates of the cost of remediation suggest that public four-year colleges and universities spent in the range of $435 million to $543 million in 2004-05 on remedial instruction.” I can’t find anyone to tell me what it costs today.

Last year, a study by a conservative California think tank, Pacific Research Institute, calculated that remediation cost at $274 million.

You would think that when you graduate from a high school in California you’d be prepared to enter college. So how is it that you can attend four years of high school, complete the course work, get a diploma attesting to the completion of that work, and then need to be taught English and mathematics in college?

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Nothing contained in this blog is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Pacific Research Institute or as an attempt to thwart or aid the passage of any legislation.

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