What’s Wrong with Free College?

What’s wrong with free college for everybody? This.

And on top of everything else listed in the article, you’ll need an even larger army of adjuncts to teach introductory English composition and Co without any hope of tenure. Because nobody in their right mind would award tenure for this kind of teaching.

Free college for all sounds great. To those who have zero understanding of how higher education works.


10 thoughts on “What’s Wrong with Free College?”

    1. Right – these exist in a whole context, where there are a lot of other educational options and the university is only one kind of path. With better pay at a few trades, and a different kind of civil society, you can do fine and even be intellectually engaged and educated, without a university degree. I really do miss the days of the California master plan, though.


  1. College was basically free when I went. It cost me $600/year. It was kind of hard to get in, but you could get the courses you needed in public schools. If you didn’t get into the elite tier I got into (the top 10% or so), you could get into a second-tier place (top 35%), and there were good community colleges with various kinds of 2-year degrees, for various kinds of professions or for transfer to a four-year institution. It didn’t break the state — the decision to make college expensive was basically ideological, the need to cut state funding having been created by other decisions made by the government/voters.

    And in the community colleges, you did have people tenured who taught freshman and sophomore writing and things like that. You could then have real professionals, doing professional development, supporting the school and the students in all sorts of ways. It’s not unimportant teaching and there is a trick to it, and there is value in valuing people.

    The point about insisting everyone go to college is true enough, it shouldn’t be required or strictly necessary, but truly, I’ve known people who don’t look like “college material” to get a whole lot out of college. And even if you think college should cost something, costs now have really gotten out of hand and the outlook is kind of bleak for many with or without college. It’s concerning.


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