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Politics

Marco Rubio, Ron Wyden Continue the Fight for Transparency in Higher Ed

March 9, 2019 - 7:30am
Marco Rubio and Ron Wyden
Marco Rubio and Ron Wyden

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is supporting a proposal to offer more transparency on the costs of higher education.

Back in 2017, Rubio worked with U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., and U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Oreg., to showcase the “Student Right to Know Before You Go Act.” The proposal would ensure potential college students are provided data about colleges and universities including graduation rates, costs, debts associated with attending the school and expected salaries of graduates. Rubio and Wyden have championed similar proposals before in the Senate. The bill also ensures privacy protection measures for colleges and universities sharing the data. 

This week, Wyden brought the proposal back with Warner and Rubio continuing to support it. 

“Investing in a college education is one of the most important decisions that students and families can make,” Rubio said. “Before students take out thousands of dollars in loans, students should have information about how much money they should expect to borrow and their future earning potential for the schools and areas of study they are planning to pursue. The Student Right to Know Before You Go Act gives American families the opportunity to make more informed and cost-effective higher education decisions and provides the peace of mind that this information is secure and protected.”

“Students deserve the opportunity to make the best possible choices for themselves. With the massive costs of higher education, we must equip students with the information they need as they decide where and what to study,” Wyden said. “It’s time to put the power back in the hands of students and their families as they make important investments in their futures.”

“Choosing a college or university is a major financial decision—it can affect students’ likelihood of graduating, the amount of student loan debt they will incur, and their future earning potential,” Warner said. “Students and families making such critical decisions have the right to know whether they are making a worthwhile investment, and this legislation will make important information available for those weighing different options.”

The senators noted that currently information provided to prospective students in the admissions process often only focuses on parts of the data, including focusing on full-time first-time freshmen instead of non-traditional students. 

On Wednesday, the bill was sent to the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. So far there is no version in the U.S. House. Back in 2017, U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., was the chief sponsor of the House bill with U.S. Reps. Andre Carson, D-Ind., Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Penn., and Scott Peters, D-Calif., as cosponsors. 

Comments

The interesting part of this bill is the requirement to use a specific technology to make it possible. Don't often see that, let alone such a new technology like Secure Multi-Party Computation.

More importently, 'standardize' course selection options "across the board", making college education a worthwhile endeavor once again in America's history (and not merely to make "a huge profit margin" for colleges to expand their campuses EXPONENTIALLY, and purposfully, at the expense of formal education).

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