Most states in the past year have begun to restore some of the cuts they made to higher education funding after the recession hit. In almost all states, however, higher education funding remains well below pre-recession levels, as we explained in a recent paper. The large state funding cuts have led to both steep college tuition increases and spending cuts that may diminish the quality of education for students.
Consider that, nationwide, after adjusting for inflation:
The average state is spending $2,026, or 23 percent, less per student than before the recession; and
Annual published tuition — the “sticker price” — at four-year public colleges has risen by $1,936, or 28 percent, since the 2007-08 school year.
Click on the map below to learn more about how higher education funding and tuition have changed in each state since the recession.
A highly educated workforce is more crucial than ever to the nation’s economic future. To rebuild states’ higher education systems in the coming years, policymakers in many states will need to raise revenue or, at the very least, avoid shortsighted tax cuts, which would make it much harder to invest in higher education.