Thursday, November 13, 2008

Californians Want Higher Ed Made Higher Budget Priority

Natalia Bremer from Chapter 305 (San Francisco) and new Chair of the CSUEU Legislative Committee shared an interesting find about Californian's views on higher education costs:

According to a survey by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC), Californians approve of the job California's higher education systems are doing. A majority think higher education spending should be a higher priority, and prefer shifting funds from other state programs to raising taxes or fees.

Californians give high grades to all three branches of the higher education system: community college (51% good, 15% excellent), California State University (52% good, 10% excellent), University of California (50% good, 15% excellent).

Funding is trickier:

Today, most Californians (83%) are concerned that the budget crisis will lead to significant cuts in funding for higher education, and more than half (54%) say spending for public colleges and universities should be a high or very high priority. Yet more than half (52%) are unwilling to pay higher taxes or to increase student fees (62%) in order to avoid such cuts. However, about half (53%) favor spending more state government money to avoid increasing tuition and fees – even if it means less money for other state programs.

PPIC describes itself as a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research on major economic, social, and political issues.


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