Scott Right to Push for Slower Rise in Tuition Rates (Opinion)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tuition for colleges and universities is putting students across Florida and the nation deeply into debt.

While Florida's 12 public universities are relatively cheap compared to other states' colleges, many students in the Sunshine State still have to borrow to attend them.

So it's good news that Gov. Rick Scott wants to put the brakes on future tuition hikes at the 12 colleges and universities overseen by the Florida Board of Governors. According to the Associated Press, Scott met with the board last week and said the fact that Florida has lower-than-average tuition doesn't give anyone an excuse for raising rates.

To drive home the point, Scott called tuition a "tax" and tied the lower-than-average tuition rates to the affordable cost of living in Florida.

Florida's tuition and fees average $6,140 a year for undergraduates, according to AP, which is well below the national average. Yet pressure is on the various colleges and universities to raise tuition.

The state Legislature cut $300 million from the higher education budget. Money was tight and Scott wanted to focus on better funding K-12 education. In the previous state budget, Scott was able to give $1 billion in new funding to K-12 education.

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