Features Opinion — December 08, 2014 by Nick Linfesty
Mid-Term Elections: The Unknown Future of Education

As President Obama wheels into his seventh year, the political future of the United States is weighed on the past midterm election. The 2014 midterm election saw the Grand Old Party steal seven seats from traditionally Democratic states such as Colorado, Montana, and a surprising West Virginia. The Race for Alaska was almost a guaranteed GOP win giving them a 53 seat majority in the House.

As high schoolers, one of the biggest things on our mind is college. With college comes the fun of choosing your major and getting the credentials for any job you want, but the biggest thing on our mind is tuition. Over the past few years, the US government has put about $175 billion a year towards student aid. The unfortunate part is that over the past few years school tuition has gone on the rise paving the way for rising student debts and unimpressive graduation rates. The future of our academic success will weigh deeply on any future policy that will handle school payments.

At the beginning of Obama’s first term, the United States was ranked 12th in the world for the number of people with college degrees between the ages of 25-34. Today, we have fallen to 14th behind Israel, Belgium and France and way behind the world leaders, Korea, Japan and China. With an economy slowly going down, a widened wealth difference and the masses of low income students that pile into schools are either unable to pay for tuition or “academically unprepared” to receive a college degree in the United States. A few major reasons for this drop is that the Democratic Party continues to pump money into an education system that is flawed. An example of this mess is introducing the screw up of the century, Common Core.

The future of our education on the international scale will have to be glued together by the Republican Party.  If we look at the simple statistics, we know we can trust them with our education.  In 2012, the number of low-income students who completed high school and were enrolled in college was about 50.9%.  In 2007, Under President Bush it reached a record high of 58.4%.  In the words of President Obama, “Unfortunately, today only 30% of low-income students enroll in college right after high school and, far worse, by their mid-twenties only 9% earn a bachelor’s degree.”  After all of the work he attempted to do, he had low income families enrolled at the same percentage of middle class students in the 1980s.  Republicans believe that the Higher Education Act of 1965 should be discontinued because it has been abused to pay for people who won’t get a job to pay for some funds themselves.

In conclusion, the 2014 mid-term elections have put forth the fact that everyday people like you and me are tired of our hard work meaning nothing.  For us teens to be respected on the international stage, we have to take advantage of any push brought on by the new House.  Remember, the only way is forward.

 

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Nick Linfesty

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