Public Hearing On College Ratings

Career College Central summary:

  • A federal college ratings system has the potential to curb access to higher education for disadvantaged minority and low-income students, several college leaders and student advocates told U.S. Education Department officials on Wednesday.
  • Dozens of students, faculty members, administrators, parents and advocacy groups testified at a daylong hearing at California State University’s Dominguez Hills campus. The event kicked off a series of four public forums that the Education Department is holding this month to solicit feedback on how to develop a federal college ratings system, President Obama's top higher education priority.
  • As might be expected at a forum open to the public, the comments were wide-ranging and many touched on broad themes about college affordability. Several speakers lamented the decline in state funding for public education. Students relayed personal anecdotes about their struggles with large amounts of student loan debt. Several faculty members said they were concerned that a ratings system would be reductive and would not take into account the full value of a college education.
  • One central concern for many of the speakers, however, was the extent to which a ratings plan will help or harm students at community colleges and other institutions that serve disadvantaged populations.

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