To be considered a state of opportunity i n the 21st century, Colorado must provide its adults - both young and old - with access to lifelong education and training . Real opportunities for further education and training must not only be available to recent high school graduates, but also to high school dropouts of all ages who are trying to get back on the Cycle of Opportunity, English language learners, and high school graduates who find their skills are no longer good enough.
A Boulder Daily Camera commentary expressing the need to fund public community colleges, whose funding has decreased in recent years, making education beyond high school more out of reach for many Coloradans.
We should use Referendum C money to help make up for past funding cuts to community colleges, junior colleges and state colleges throughout Colorado, giving priority to institutions serving and demonstrating a commitment to low-income, underserved and rural students.
HB 1098 represents a net opportunity gain for Colorado. It will help increase the number of students, especially from low-income and minority backgrounds, who complete high school and enroll in college.
We must encourage the development and expansion of dual enrollment and other innovative programs throughout the state. If the state Department of Education and Department of Higher Education and their governing boards cannot agree on how to do this, the legislature should by-pass them and make it happen
Increasing the stipend and holding down tuition should be a top priority. We should increase the stipend to at least $3,000 per full-time student in 2007, and higher if possible. And we should make sure COF stipends keep pace with inflation after that. Colorado should also double need-based financial aid and work-study opportunities.
A Boulder Daily Camera commentary summarizing the Bell Policy Center's Education White Papers, which explore the education pipeline, who gets into college, who finishes college, who educates low-income and minority students, and who defaults on student loans.