All Articles Tagged "education costs"
(Chicago Tribune) — Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration tried Monday to convince aldermen to swallow a $150 million property tax increase for the Chicago Public Schools, but it was a tough sell. Emanuel has promised to erase a $635.7 million city budget shortfall without raising taxes, arguing that he cannot, in good conscience, ask taxpayers to put more money “into a system that hasn’t been reformed.” On Monday, some aldermen made the same argument about the Chicago Public Schools after attending a series of 45-minute briefings on the record property tax increase at City Hall. The hike would add $84 to an average home worth $250,000. It marks the first time in four years that CPS is seeking to raise taxes for schools to the maximum allowed by law. The hike apparently is aggravated by a nearly five-fold increase in a Public Building Commission levy that CPS controls that will pull in $53 million, up from $11 million previously, to help CPS pay the debt service on school construction bonds.
(Chicago Tribune) — On top of hefty charges for textbooks, technology, bus rides, sports and clubs, school districts are hitting up parents to pay fees for hundreds of individual courses, from French I to American literature, history, foods and furniture-making. The so-called course or lab fees can range from $10 or $20 to more than $100 per class, depending on the school, records show, pumping up parents’ bills and adding to the rising cost of a public school education in the Chicago region. ”This is like private school,” said parent Gio Chavez, who walked out of Oak Lawn Community High School’s registration this week shellshocked. The final tally for her sophomore son’s classes: $665.
(Chicago Sun Times) — Do all Chicago public high schools really need two Chicago police officers stationed inside them every day — at a cost of $25 million a year? The tab for police service — begun under former Mayor Richard M. Daley — recently more than tripled, prompting Chicago Public School officials faced with a $712 million deficit to start taking a hard look at whether every penny of that cost is being spent effectively. “We’re looking at if we need two police officers in every high school all day long. My guess is we don’t,” CPS Chief Administrative Officer Tim Cawley told the Chicago Sun-Times. “We hope to reduce our expenses in that area, but only in those schools where we can do that without compromising safety.”
(Wall Street Journal) — Karen Dombi was thrilled when her three oldest children were picked for student government this year—not because she envisioned careers in politics, but because it was one of the few programs at their public high school that didn’t charge kids to participate. Budget shortfalls have prompted Medina Senior High to impose fees on students who enroll in many academic classes and extracurricular activities. The Dombis had to pay to register their children for basic courses such as Spanish I and Earth Sciences, to get them into graded electives such as band, and to allow them to run cross-country and track. The family’s total tab for a year of public education: $4,446.50. ”I’m wondering, am I going to be paying for my parking spot at the school? Because you’re making me pay for just about everything else,” says Ms. Dombi, a parent in this middle-class community in northern Ohio. Public schools across the country, struggling with cuts in state funding, rising personnel costs and lower tax revenues, are shifting costs to students and their parents by imposing or boosting fees for everything from enrolling in honors English to riding the bus. At high schools in several states, it can cost more than $200 just to walk in the door, thanks to registration fees, technology fees and unspecified “instructional fees.”
(The Loop 21) — With student debt nearing $1 trillion and Americans owing more on student loans than on credit cards, you know it’s bad when the national media finally pays attention. And that’s exactly what happened this week when CNBC premiered a special called “Price of Admission: America’s College Debt Crisis.” The report was compelling and well done except for one glaring omission: It didn’t feature any students or families who were African American or of any other non-white ethnicity. If CNBC goes as far as to say college debt is a national crisis – and indeed it is – then that fact should have been made obvious in its reporting about its effect on students and families from all ethnicities and backgrounds.
(U.S. News and World Report) — If you need to borrow to finance your education, federal student loans should be first on your menu. Congress and the U.S. Department of Education regulate federal student loans, setting maximum interest rates, borrowing limits, and other important loan terms. These loans come in loads of different flavors. Here’s a taste of what you might borrow: Perkins Loans are for borrowers demonstrating “exceptional financial need” and can be used for undergraduate, graduate, or professional school. These loans are made through schools’ financial aid offices, and schools get help with funding from the government. Perkins Loans are delicious if you can get them, because they have no fees and low interest rates.