Originally published on Deutsche Einheit – Oct 3, 2014.
“Tuition fees are unjust,”
“They discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up study. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge”
Now who is this liberal, progressive, radical socialist, commie bastard who said that? Tell us so the Koch brothers can throw money at this insane idea!
Well sorry Koch brothers. The quote was by Dorothee Stapelfeldt, a Senator in Hamburg, Germany
Yes my sorry ass future wage slaves – Germany officially rid itself of college and university tuition for all it’s students – even foreign ones!
Now it’s not exactly that German students were carrying such a big load of high tuition bills anyway – institutions of higher education only started charging fees in 2006. While state governments then began to charge €1,000 in response to a constitutional court decision that collecting fees didn’t breach Germany’s commitment to universal post-secondary education, many began to pressure the academic institutions that eventually led to the scrapping of tuition fees.
“We got rid of tuition fees because we do not want higher education which depends on the wealth of the parents,” Gabrielle Heinen-Kjajic, the minister for science and culture in Lower Saxony, said in a statement.
I guess they don’t want to turn out wage slaves burdened with debt at 22 years old.
Imagine that! FREE college – in GERMANY!!
Free higher education is now a concept embraced by most of Europe with the noticeable exception of the U.K
Now why, in this land of the free, home of the brave, best country on earth, yadayadayada, can’t we do that here? We had it once – I went to a free university in New York City.
Well actually we can – without much fuss – if we had the political will.
High tuition fees in the U.S. have caused student loan debt, which stands at $1.2 trillion, to spiral out of control. It is now the second-highest form of consumer debt in the country.
See my post yesterday.
“The U.S. as a whole could take a note from Germany and make public universities free with relative ease. The government spends around $69 billion subsidizing college education and another $107.4 billion on student loans. Tuition at all public universities comes to much less than that, around $62.6 billion in 2012. By restructuring the education budget, the cost of attending public universities could easily be brought down to zero. This would also put pressure on private universities to lower their cost in order to be more competitive.”
I mean what is the purpose of a “state” university if students in the state have to borrow exorbitant amounts of money to attend it?
“Germans see their economy as a social market economy, that is, one that combines a capitalist mode of production with the belief that society should protect all its members from economic and social need. Such protection is provided by a system of social insurance to which people contribute according to their incomes with the understanding that they may someday need its assistance. The belief that society is responsible for the well-being of its members is a key concept of German social policy.”
At least for now, learning German might be the best financial choice an American high school student can make.
Next thing you know those Europeans will be spouting that universal health care is a human right! Oh wait – they already have that.
Munich is really nice this time of year!
P.S. Today, October 3 is Deutsche Einheit – German reunification day. Congrats!
I should correct my earlier remark about fees being charged in the UK. Scotland pays for the tuition of its citizens who qualify for university places. They have to find their own living costs, but it does put other UK countries to shame.
Cheers, Frank. Pete.
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Thank you Margaret Thatcher! 🙂
Frank, here’s my take on that witch.
Best wishes as always, Pete.
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I wrote a similar piece on another site back then; unfortunately I can’t access it as the site no longer exists. Great minds think alike. Best.
We don’t have free college here in New Zealand – not since Reagan and Thatcher used this country as an experiment for their neoliberal policies. At present, NZ spends a fortune putting their kids through college and they all end up leaving because salaries are too low here for them to repay their students loans. The end result is systemic impoverishment of this country. Because we have no middle class, we’re totally dependent on exporting logs, milk powder, lamb and beef. The immense fluctuation in global commodity prices is killing us.
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Hi Doc – not exactly a way to create wealth and a viable middle class. Best wishes for Christmas and 2016. Regards.