The first budget of the rather short-lived Paul Martin administration introduced a fairly cool idea to Canadian policy: the Canada Learning Bond (CLB). The idea built on some the then-trendy work of American sociologist Michael Sherraden (among others) around asset-based solutions to poverty. Basically, the idea was that one of the reasons middle-class people act middle-class is that that they have a specific set of time-preferences; on the whole, working-class individuals tend to have shorter time-preferences and hence are less … [ Read More ]
Since we’re talking tuition this week, I thought I’d take an opportunity to tee off on one of the weakest arguments out there on this subject. You know, the one that goes like this:
Higher Education is a Public Good Public Goods should be free Yay, free tuition.
There are actually two responses to this argument, one narrow and one broad.
The narrow argument is that in economic terms the first premise is wrong and hence the second and third … [ Read More ]
As many of you know, I’ve been around the block a few times around the issue of “free tuition” (see here here here and here for a few examples if you’re interested/have forgotten/find these pieces amusing). But one thing that I’ve found fascinating about the developing American discourse on free tuition is how very different it is from that of other countries. I’ve written before about how the presence of private universities changes the nature of the debate in the US, but the actual rationale for universality is … [ Read More ]
Ok, I said I wouldn’t write over the summer unless someone of importance said something titanically stupid. Andrew Adonis, architect of former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair’s education policies crossed that line on Friday with a – yes – titanically stupid column about tuition fees, so here I am.
First, some background. Prior to 1998, the UK had a free tuition system. From 1998 to 2006 it had a system of varying tuition fees – £1,000 if your family made over £30,000 per year, … [ Read More ]
Statscan put out a very important little paper on access to post-secondary education on Monday. It got almost zero coverage despite conclusively putting to bed a number of myths about fees and participation, so I’m going to rectify that by explaining it to y’all in minute detail.
To understand this piece, you need to know something about a neat little Statscan tool called the Longitudinal Administrative Database (LAD). Every time someone files an income tax form for the first time, LAD … [ Read More ]