A brief response to Doug:
On Tue, 21 May 1996, Doug Brent wrote:
> Much of the problem seems rooted in a misunderstanding of the question
> of who benefits from education. If we adopt the captialist discourse,
> it would follow that the person who benefits from a service should pay
> for it as an investment against future rewards (better job etc.) Even
> if this discourse is generally correct (a big if), it presumes that
> the individual student is the main benefactor of education. The
> benefits to society as a whole of having a more educated populace as a
> whole are not even considered. If they were, it would follow that
> society as a whole ought to help pay.
In _20/20 Visions: The Futures of Canadian Education_, Crawford Kilian
"One American economist, Barry Bluestone, calculates that for every dollar
the state of Mass. invests in post-secondary education, it gets back a
dollar and fifty-seven cents in increased tax revenues. On an annual basis
Mass. is earning between eight and nine precent on its post-secondary invest-
ment. Comparable returns doubtless come from public ecucation as well. .
"Why, then, are governments cutting post-secondary and public education
budgets instead of pumping every available nickel into them? It's not
because politicians are stupid. They're just shortsighted. From the
politicians' point of view, the current government, whoever it happens
to be, gets praise for keeping expenses down, not for generating future
I thank Michael Hoechsmann for his timely reminders/analyses of the
current state of economic concenrs relating to education.
I think many of us must begin to respond publicly to the unfair
battering education is taking these days. I guess I'll write
my letter to the local editor tomorrow--after I've marked my
latest round of papers from the summer school course I'm teaching.