As a candidate and for the duration of his administration, President Barack Obama has persistently insisted that affordable higher education is among his top priorities.
Even today at his “grassroots” website, Organizing for Action (Barackobama.com), Obama lists affordable education as the second of six principles for “securing the American dream and strengthening the middle class.” Specifically, the president seeks to provide “a quality education that doesn’t break the bank” and to “rein in the cost of college for families by rewarding quality schools that make higher education affordable.”
So how is it going?
It’s a disastrous failure.
According to the College Board, the average cost for tuition, room and board at four-year colleges and universities has increased 28 percent during Obama’s presidency.
The average cost of tuition, room and board at private four-year colleges and universities has increased 27.89 percent — from $31,993 during the 2008-2009 academic year to $40,917 this year.
At public four-year colleges and universities, the average cost has risen 27.96 percent — from $14,372 in 2008-2009 to $18,391 this year.
Tuition prices have gone up each year of the Obama administration. They have also far exceeded the pace of inflation.
According to the inflation calculator provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the $31,993 total price tag for a private school in 2008 would be equal to just $34,616 at the end of 2013 if college costs rose at the rate of inflation — a far cry from the $40,917 an average student is paying this year.
Similarly, the $14,372 total price tag for a public school in 2008 would be equal to just $15,550 at the end of 2013 — substantially less than the $18,391 an average student at a taxpayer-funded public school is paying this year.