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Policy in Brief: Financing Higher Education

On this episode of Policy in Brief, Oren Cass and Chris Griswold discuss how we should finance higher education in the U.S.

Policy Brief: Self-Financing by Colleges

Place higher education’s risks on institutions, not students

Policy Brief: Student Debt Relief the Old-Fashioned Way

Make student debt dischargeable in bankruptcy instead of canceling loans

A Nation of Boys at Risk

After decades of intensive effort and investment to create an equitable education system, not least for girls and women, the nation finds itself with a peculiar predicament: It is boys who are falling behind furthest and fastest.

Where Have All the Young Men Gone?

The question of who would pursue non-college pathways, if they were offered, is one that has bedeviled education reform debates for decades.

After Student-Debt Relief, America Must Move Beyond ‘College for All’

American Compass research director Wells King argues for building real alternatives to the “college-for-all” education pipeline in the wake of Biden’s misguided student loan forgiveness.

Policy in Brief: The Workforce Training Grant

On the inaugural episode of Policy in Brief, American Compass executive director Oren Cass is joined by policy director Chris Griswold to discuss the Workforce Training Grant, a proposal to create a meaningful alternative pathway to college.

Rebuilding from the College Catastrophe Starts Here

The problem that the American Workforce Act aims to solve is simple, but deadly serious: In American education, all roads lead to college.

Policy Brief: Workforce Training Grant

Congress should create a Workforce Training Grant—a $10,000-per-year grant to employers for each trainee engaged in on-the-job training.

Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness is Wrong. Here’s How to Handle College Debt Instead.

America has turned higher ed into a lavishly expensive sacred cow, and now we’re all footing the bill. Let’s make college debt boring again, argues Oren Cass.

Oren Cass on Student Loan Debt

Oren Cass joins Paul Ollinger for a discussion of student debt, “college-for-all,” and how to rethink our approach to education in the U.S.

College Is Not for All

American Compass’s Oren Cass and Wells King discuss the reality that most young Americans miss out on commencement.

Failure to Launch

In the popular imagination, young Americans leave home to attend college, where they earn degrees that launch them into careers. The actual experience is radically different.

Escaping the Bachelor’s Fad

For noncollege pathways to be viable, policymakers must reduce employers’ needless demand for college degrees.

Revitalizing the Federal Apprenticeship System

To capitalize on bipartisan support, federal apprenticeship programs must be rescued from sclerosis.

The Banality of Student Loans

With loans dischargeable in bankruptcy, with subsidies limited to a straightforward grant, and with providers responsible for financing the investments they promise to facilitate, the white-washed “ivory towers” would lose much of their magical allure.

Giving Community Colleges a Clear Purpose

Community colleges are uniquely positioned to partner with industry and credential the workforce.

Colleges Should Only Succeed When Students Do

A promising higher-education funding model ties institutional incentives to labor-market outcomes.

Comprehensive Support for Low-Income Students

To tackle life’s challenges, low-income students deserve comprehensive support systems grounded in evidence.

Embedding Employers in Education

Employers can take an active part in preparing high school students for the workforce.

New Education Models Need New Schools

Education policy should spur the creation of new schools and learning models for job-oriented education.

30 Minutes with Virginia Foxx

Congresswoman Virginia Foxx joined us for a 30 Minutes discussion of how the education system can be retooled to better serve all Americans.

Retooling American Education

How to Move Beyond College-for-All

Introducing Pluralism to Public Schooling

Successful school systems in democracies worldwide point to three essential levers to improve students’ life outcomes.

Foreword: What’s in Your Toolbox?

American education must be equipped with diverse tools fit for students’ diverse aspirations.

‘College for All’ Is Broken. Let’s Embrace Opportunity Pluralism Instead.

Bruno Manno features a recent American Compass survey on higher education in a discussion of the failures of the “college-for-all” model.

The Workforce Training Grant

Public policy should recognize that employers, not universities, often provide the most socially valuable form of training and should redirect public resources accordingly.

The Upside of the Downward Trend in College Enrollment

The media have been full of reports of college students, almost a million strong, who have gone missing during the pandemic. Virtually every article quotes experts expressing alarm and dismay.

Pushing ‘College For All’ Makes Americans Poorer. Here’s What We Need Instead

Oren Cass discusses new American Compass research on the effects of globalization on American workers and domestic jobs.

Report: College Degree Attainment Far Outpaces U.S. Jobs Requiring BAs

PRESS RELEASE—New American Compass analysis finds that wages have stagnated for college graduates without degree-requiring jobs.

The False Promise of Good Jobs

While the share of American jobs requiring a college degree has increased in recent decades, the share of workers holding college degrees has risen much faster.

New Ed Surveys Find Surprising Agreement in How Parents & Young People Think

Bruno Manno explores the results of the American Compass Failing on Purpose Survey and the implications for education policy.

The Left & Right Case Against College For All

Oren Cass and author Freddie Deboer discuss the left and right cases against the college-for-all system that dominates American education.

How ‘College For All’ Is Failing Generations Of Americans

American Compass executive director Oren Cass joins The Federalist’s Emily Jashinsky to discuss the failures of the “college-for-all” model in the U.S.

A Guide to College-for-All

The college-for-all model fails most Americans in favor of a “Fortunate Fifth” who proceed smoothly from high school to college to career.

Staying the Course

We should continue the state – and community-level work that is bringing to life a more pluralist approach to schooling, argues Andy Smarick.

Make Good (School) Choices

Johns Hopkins’s Ashley Berner and the Manhattan Institute’s Andy Smarick discuss options and tradeoffs in restructuring American public education.

Reform Requires Reformers

Ashley Berner makes the case for a pluralist structure that embraces district, charter, and private schools, while insisting on quality.

An Emergent Educational Order

The Manhattan Institute’s Andy Smarick discusses how an intelligent system emerged in American education over many years.

Between the Common School and the Market

Johns Hopkins’s Ashley Berner discusses the benefits and tradeoffs of a pluralistic approach to education in America.

What Are Public Schools For?

According to a new American Compass survey, parents have a different answer than activists and policymakers do, writes Oren Cass.

Survey Finds U.S. Public Education Ignores Priorities of Parents and Students

PRESS RELEASE—Education reformers have lost sight of what most Americans say public education is for, according to a new American Compass survey.

Failing on Purpose Survey

The American Compass Failing on Purpose Survey explores the perspectives and experiences of those in closest contact with the American education system—namely parents, current students, and recent graduates.

The Citizenship Test

Public education must instill civic virtues and shared allegiances.

Laboratories for Democracy

Public education must advance national power.

Making Meritocrats Moral

Public education must form a virtuous elite.

Failing on Purpose

How We Forgot What Public Education Is For

Conservative Scholars Rethink Public Education’s Purpose

PRESS RELEASE—Essay series explores how public education is failing in both practice and principle

Foreword: Teach for America

Public education’s primary purpose is preservation of our democratic republic.

The School of Self-Rule

Public education must empower the common citizen.

The “Big Quit” Is an Opportunity to Fix Our Broken Education System

A broad rethinking of work and human capital development is occurring while 10.4 million jobs sit unfilled and more than 8.4 million unemployed individuals look for work.

The Snowflakes Aren’t Melting

Most so-called snowflakes accumulate not in society’s quiet valleys where we might expect to find gentler souls genuinely struggling to cope with conflict, but rather atop the peaks of elite institutions to which our most aggressive strivers have clawed their way.

When Student Loans Pay for Nothing but Palm Trees

What we gave our children (and paid dearly for) was a mountain of debt and no job opportunities to be had. So much for the American Dream.

How to Fix Widespread Buyer’s Remorse in Education

Almost two-thirds of U.S. high school graduates enroll immediately in some form of postsecondary education with a clear-cut motive. In 2019, 83.5% of entering freshmen said that getting a better job was a “very important” reason for attending college, up from a 1976 low of 68%. Are these expectations realized? Mostly no.

Where Do Parents Go When Public Schools Go ‘Woke’?

Parents who live their lives according to religious principles should be able to find a school in which they are welcomed, not attacked or undermined.

High School and Beyond: Creating Pathways to Opportunity

The essential elements of a new opportunity program are what students know (knowledge) and whom they know (relationships).

Critics Corner with Prof. Donald Boudreaux

On this episode of Critics Corner, Oren is joined by one of our most active critics and open-letter writers, Donald Boudreaux of George Mason University.

Building Family Policy Around Parent Preferences

American Compass research director Wells King discusses the results of the 2021 Home Building Survey that show how parents prefer to balance work and childcare.

Complacency and Wasteful Spending Blight US Higher Education

American Compass’s Oren Cass makes the case against forgiving billions of dollars of student debt and for rethinking our approach to higher education.

How to Fix America: Stop Pushing College

In a Dealbook feature collecting ideas from a wide variety of leaders on how to improve the country, American Compass’s Oren Cass argues for shifting our focus away from college and toward providing strong, non-college career pathways.

Big Ed’s CARES Cash Dash

The CARES Act, intended to address the economic devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, offers especially generous tax treatment for charitable contributions in 2020, to encourage giving in a time of such extraordinary need. Households can deduct contributions up to 100% of their income for the year, potentially eliminating their tax liability entirely.

Who Are College-or-Bust Charters Really For?

In a recent post, Chris Arnade compared the American education system to strip mining, an analogy that Patrick Deneen uses in his book Why Liberalism Failed. A similar analogy comes Read more…

Is A College Degree the Only Way to Succeed?

During his growing up years, Mark, an underemployed contract laborer in his 30s, often heard his mother describe their town as “the devil’s thumbprint.” The name alluded to both its literal location in a valley and its social stigma as the watering hole of riffraff. “You gotta go up the hill and get out,” Mark said of the place and his aspirations.

Conservative Education Reform Should Emphasize Relationships, Institutions, and Vocation

A social capital approach to school reform focused on developing habits of mind and habits of association in young people is a basis for conservatives to lead on K-12 reform. It also offers conservatives a way to create new political coalitions with diverse advocates who believe expanding opportunity for young people includes developing their social capital.

Our Educational Colonialism

I get criticized for not talking about policy enough, so here we go: No Child Left Behind is a disaster, the spearhead of our misguided attempt to funnel everyone to college.

Pod Life or Pod School?

“I will not live in the pod.” This commonplace rallying cry among younger Right-aligned people on social media is approaching the status of a credal opening statement.

Ivanka Teams With Apple, IBM to Push Job-Skills Schooling

REAL CLEAR POLITICS talks with American Compass’s Oren Cass about a new White House initiative to connect Americans with education and training programs that can be accessed immediately without requiring the time or money of a bachelor’s degree.

A Better Model for Worker Training

A Response to Samuel Hammond

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