As part of his economic initiative, President Barack Obama is pushing for measures to make college more easily affordable.
"Families and taxpayers can't just keep paying more and more and more into an undisciplined system where costs just keep on going up and up and up," Obama said last month in Galesburg, Ill. "We'll never have enough loan money, we'll never have enough grant money, to keep up with costs that are going up 5, 6, 7 percent a year. We've got to get more out of what we pay for."
He added, "Today, more students are earning their degree, but soaring costs saddle them with unsustainable debt."
We talk about college costs and what might be done to bring them down.
LEARN MORE ABOUT KEEPING COLLEGE COSTS DOWN
• Yes, Congress can go big on college affordability
There is an answer, and yes, it's something Washington could do. A redesign. By consolidating existing higher education programs into flexible state aid and targeting funds to students from middle and low-income families, the administration and Congress can slow growth in tuition, reduce student loan debt, and speed time to degree. (Michael Dannenberg, The Hill)
• Do Student Loan Interest Rates Matter?
First of all, we need to get congress out of the business of setting interest rates. Thankfully most policy makers are in agreement on this and have endorsed legislation that pegs student rates to the market. Second, we need to ensure that the federal lending program is fiscally responsible. Lending to students at cost ... is the best way to achieve this. Since the government has the ability to borrow at low rates through the treasury, loans that are costless to the government will have rates that are well below what private lenders can charge. Constructing a budget neutral lending program will ensure that loans will be available for future generations of students. (Beth Akers, Brookings)