Commentary: Keeping NH postsecondary education within reach –

by | Jun 30, 2022 | Education

A recent blog post by Phil Sletten, research director for the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute, drew attention to the myriad of financial measures by which New Hampshire’s support for public higher education lags that of other states.  That post also identified some of the adverse consequences of this funding that include barriers to pursuing postsecondary education for students in New Hampshire, the mass exodus of New Hampshire’s college-bound high school graduates who enroll at colleges and universities in other states (potentially remaining out of state to begin their careers), and the significant student loan debt that this state’s graduates carry.All of those are important concerns and have real consequences for New Hampshire’s students and their families and for the state’s workforce, and there is no doubt that infusion of additional support from the state would be helpful; however, as sensible as it is for NHFPI to focus on the financial aspects of postsecondary education in New Hampshire, it’s important to note that this is only part of the story.  Over the past decade, and primarily as a result of support from the State of New Hampshire, the tuition rate for New Hampshire residents that the Community College System of New Hampshire (CCSNH) charges has increased by less than 2.5%.  That’s not 2.5% annually, but 2.5% total, over more than a decade.  Accounting for inflation, even during the period of low inflation that existed before the current surge, the inflation-adjust …

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