Let’s get serious about ‘equality of opportunity’

In the United States, we have long taken pride in trying to provide equality of opportunity, if not outcome. Whether you come from a poor family or rich family, we have long believed that in America, hard work would be rewarded.

That’s no longer the case. Repeated studies have found that the United States now trails other countries, including much of Europe, in the ability to move up the economic ladder. We now rank with Great Britain as having one of the most rigid economic structures in the industrialized world, with decreasing economic mobility.

One explanation for that change is access to college, especially in a global economy in which education is critical. In a new study, researchers at the University of Michigan took a look at college completion rates across economic groups. For Americans born between 1979 and 1982, just 9 percent of those born into poor households finished college, while 54 percent of those born into the richest 20 percent of households completed their degree.

There are a lot of reasons for that differential, including lower high-school graduation rates among poorer households. But in light of how fast the cost of college has risen in recent years, economics has to be a major factor.

Today, members of the Georgia Legislature are debating these topics with a great deal of passion as they wrangle over the future of the state’s troubled HOPE scholarship program. Lottery-ticket sales have not kept pace with the cost of higher education, making it financially impossible for the state to continue to cover all tuition costs for high-achieving students.

In general, Democrats argue in favor of making the program both need-based and merit-based. Senate Democrats, for example, propose a formula that this year would limit the scholarship to academically qualified students from households making less than $140,000. For those students — 94 percent of those academically eligible — it would cover 100 percent of state tuition.

Republicans, in general, oppose adding any means test to the program. Rather than bar high-income households from collecting the benefit, their general approach is to balance the HOPE budget by lowering the amount of money it provides to each recipient regardless of income.

But let’s be honest about this: A good student in a household with an income of $140,000 or better is going to college, and probably a good college, regardless of whether the HOPE is available. HOPE provides a nice little financial benefit to his or her parents, but that’s it.

In fact, let’s extend that honesty a little further: Drive through the parking lots at the University of Georgia, and you’ll see a lot of new automobiles purchased for students by affluent parents pleased that they don’t have to make tuition payments thanks to HOPE. You have to wonder whether subsidized auto purchases represent the best use of increasingly scarce scholarship dollars.

Back when HOPE was created by then-Gov. Zell Miller, it was available only to those students with a household income of less than $66,000, a number quickly raised to $100,000. That would be about $155,000 today. He called it HOPE, he said, because it offered hope “for bright students who otherwise would find it difficult to go to college.” Miller made it clear that he envisioned it as a program that would give poor and middle-class Georgians an opportunity that they might otherwise not enjoy.

That remains the program’s most important function.

– Jay Bookman

311 comments Add your comment

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
7:25 am

Did the earth move?

I agree with Zell Miller.

Normal

February 17th, 2012
7:28 am

They want us as uneducated, mindless drones to do their every bidding…

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
7:30 am

Normal

February 17th, 2012
7:36 am

Good Morning, Granny G

How are you and yours?

Ayn Rant

February 17th, 2012
7:38 am

Means testing requires an administrative bureaucracy, and provides opportunity for fraud and corruption.

There is a direct and better way: tax the wealthy more to fund the HOPE program, rather than deny their kids the benefits of HOPE. It amounts to the same thing, but the method is cleaner and simpler.

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
7:40 am

Enjoying watching Baby G and his Great Grand Pop play together….

How’s by you?

Senior Citizen Kane

February 17th, 2012
7:41 am

Jay, I know how you like to write about good economic news as you did yesterday, what about that Caterpillar plant coming to Athens, right on top of the news that Toyota will build a new parts plant in Georgia. Looks like the Republican leadership is doing an effective job in bringing new industry to our state.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:41 am

There is a direct and better way: tax the wealthy more to fund the HOPE program, rather than deny their kids the benefits of HOPE.

Well, yeah. Odds of conservative a-holes running our state allowing that to happen are infinity to one against.

TaxPayer

February 17th, 2012
7:42 am

Republicans are so for equality! I know that they want all the one percenters to be equally untaxed. And that hope money should be given to them since they were the job creators that made it possible for those people to buy lottery tickets in the first place. It’s just the ethical thing to do. :roll:

Normal

February 17th, 2012
7:44 am

Looking forward to a birthday get-together with the family tonight. As I said below, mine was yesterday and my wife’s is today. The kids, grand and great grand kids are taking us to a place called Pizza 3.14. I, of course, will be challenged to play all the games with the grand and great grand kids(stopping at the bank on the way home for a few rolls of quarters). I’m sure it will be a grand time had by all!

RLJ

February 17th, 2012
7:44 am

As a conservative, I actually agree with you. Welfare for the wealthy is unacceptable. Now, could you please write something that I disagree with so that the world will continue to spin and make sense? :-)

Mr_B

February 17th, 2012
7:45 am

Over the years I’ve told the students that I advise that if they want to go to college badly enough, it’s possible to find the money somewhere.Unfortunately, it’s getting more difficult to make that statement.

I don’t have an answer for the lottery problem, and I really don’t like the way we finance HOPE anyway. But a system of really good, affordable public universities charged exclusively with education would go a long way.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:46 am

Senate Democrats, for example, propose a formula that this year would limit the scholarship to academically qualified students from households making less than $140,000.

just to show that I’m not a complete commie collectivist, I would be fine with making that a sliding scale of dis-eligibility that would begin to gently kick in at, oh, say 1.5x the state’s median household income and end at some point a bit above $140K/year.

That would have the added advantage to indexing the income levels to some inflation-adjusted standard. And there’d be some more shared sacrifice that conservative a-holes always like to jibber-jabber about but don’t actually believe in.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:48 am

As a conservative, I actually agree with you.

Jay, could you please remove the word “conservative” from my previous posts? Thanks!

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
7:48 am

Normal Happy Birthday to you and Mrs. Normal.

Have a wonderful time at pizza night….

Our motto: Pepcid first, Pizza Second.

Polly Sigh

February 17th, 2012
7:49 am

The first two years of college simply teach our kids what other students in more progressive societies have learned through high school. HOPE shouldn’t be an option, it should be a mandate, in light of our underachieving scholastic results.

Unfortunately, “Change HOPE” sounds too much like “Hope and Change” for many of our ilk to process.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:50 am

I agree with Zell Miller.

for all the bat-crap craziness he indulged in when he left GA for DC, we Georgians owe him a debt of gratitude for single-mindedly banging down a lot of doors to get HOPE established in the first place. Lord knows what kind of a backwater hellhole this state would be now without it.

Stevie Ray

February 17th, 2012
7:55 am

JAY,

Are you suggesting my kid lose her HOPE because I make over $140K?

What is the source of your data regarding this “economic ladder”? Is it soley related to college degrees? Rigid economic structures? Can you provide me reference points as I want to know exactly how this is measured or if it is simply political rhetoric that favors your views…

Thanks daddio!

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:56 am

Are you suggesting my kid lose her HOPE because I make over $140K?

Yes. Stop whining.

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
7:57 am

“Are you suggesting my kid lose her HOPE because I make over $140K?”

What’s the matter, your kid’s bootstraps are missing?

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
7:57 am

“Are you suggesting my kid lose her HOPE because I make over $140K?”

Yep. And I agree.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:58 am

…although, Stevie, my proposal @ 7.46 would allow you to, possibly, receive some of that welfare-for-the-well-off, depending on how much the Goopers would be willing to play ball.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
7:59 am

Anyway, near and dear to my heart as this topic may be, I gotta go produce so that (among other things) my kid can get an education. Be excellent to one another.

When HOPE fails the poor

February 17th, 2012
8:01 am

….and the sad part about this is more poor/middle class people play the lottery than the rich. The more affluent individuals are the ones that reap the benefits. Something is definitely wrong with that picture!

Guy Incognito

February 17th, 2012
8:01 am

Zell’s Mt Wisdom still rings true

Normal

Can you tell me the best Steak House or Bourbon Infused cooking in the L’ville/Bardstown/Lexington area?

Oh, Happy Birthday. It’s mine in 1 week

Peadawg

February 17th, 2012
8:02 am

Making HOPE needs based is looooooong overdue.

“You have to wonder whether subsidized auto purchases represent the best use of increasingly scarce scholarship dollars.” – Not sure what you mean by this but students never see a penny of HOPE money. It’s applied directly to their accounts, so HOPE money doesn’t go towards buying cars.

Senior Citizen Kane

February 17th, 2012
8:02 am

If I interpret this column correctly, it would appear that offering the HOPE to rich kids is benefiting the U.S. auto industry.

Mick

February 17th, 2012
8:02 am

Hey normal, happy b-day to you and the missus! Mine is next monday, not much you can do with that…

TaxPayer

February 17th, 2012
8:03 am

Zell Miller is a Republican now. So did the party that stands for HOPE abandon him or did he abandon the party.

Normal

February 17th, 2012
8:03 am

HOPE was meant to help the less financially fortunate get their kids into college. It seems to me, at least, that it is morally wrong for a well off family to even consider HOPE for their kids.

carlosgvv

February 17th, 2012
8:04 am

Republican politicians are of the rich, by the rich and for the rich. By doing everything they can to curry favor with the rich, including rigging HOPE to keep poor children out of college, they deserve our utter contempt. And yet, millions and millons of middle income people still support these politicians who make no effort to hide their total commitment to the rich. Why would anyone support politicians who could not possibly care less about them?

Steve - USA (I support "None Of The Above")

February 17th, 2012
8:04 am

I was totally on board until Jay decided to throw in the part about the cars. I can take you for a drive in North Georgia and show you brand new cars that cost twice the amount of the mobile homes they are parked in front of.

When HOPE fails the poor

February 17th, 2012
8:04 am

If the funds are running out now, just imagine if the poor stop playing the lottery. There would be no HOPE!

TaxPayer

February 17th, 2012
8:04 am

Someone give Peadawg some stronger coffee.

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
8:06 am

You have to wonder whether subsidized auto purchases represent the best use of increasingly scarce scholarship dollars.” – Not sure what you mean by this but students never see a penny of HOPE money. It’s applied directly to their accounts, so HOPE money doesn’t go towards buying cars.

This was the one part of Jay’s piece that I wish he hadn’t written–it’s an emotion/anecdotal-based thing that reeks of “I saw a ni*CLANG!* buyin’ steak with food stamps” we get from the ‘tards here. Also, your argument against is sound, and I might add, it applies equally to the notion that funding (dare I say it? why not…) PP for birth control does NOT equal “funding abortion.”

/drive-by

Normal

February 17th, 2012
8:06 am

Guy,
You ask…”Can you tell me the best Steak House or Bourbon Infused cooking in the L’ville/Bardstown/Lexington area?”

No, I can’t but I can tell you where you can go and cut your own meat off the carcass and grill it yourself… :)

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:06 am

“It’s applied directly to their accounts, so HOPE money doesn’t go towards buying cars.”

Sounds like you aren’t fully awake yet. No, HOPE money doesn’t go towards buying cars…but the money the family DOESN’T have to spend on college COULD.

Stevie Ray

February 17th, 2012
8:08 am

GRANNY/DOGGONE/STANDS,

I hear you but you do realize that one of the many benefits from HOPE is that it has kept more of the brightest of the bright in-state. Is that a bad thing? The average SAT of UGA freshman class hovered just below 2000 and the cumulative high school GPA was 3.8. Are you ok with these kids leaving state? Curious

Guy Incognito

February 17th, 2012
8:08 am

Pea

Just like Planned P’s taxpayer funds don’t go toward abortions. It keeps the lights on so that their donations can do the other. Hope goes tothe college so the parents can spring for a Beemer

Peadawg

February 17th, 2012
8:09 am

“Sounds like you aren’t fully awake yet.”

I think you’re right……..

Senior Citizen Kane

February 17th, 2012
8:09 am

Hey Normal, try Pat’s Steak House on Brownsboro Road in Louisville. Their filets are the best.

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:09 am

“Are you ok with these kids leaving state? ”

I’m OK with them going wherever they think they’ll get the best education for what they want to study. Are you OK with them getting a “free” college education here in GA, and THEN leaving to go work somewhere else?

Keep Up the Good Fight!

February 17th, 2012
8:09 am

I can take you for a drive in North Georgia and show you brand new cars that cost twice the amount of the mobile homes they are parked in front of.

Wow an entire Whole Foods city. But of course anyone living in a mobile home must be poor and on the government dole, right? My suggestion is Stevie rents a tour bus, some great food services and we all take him up on his tour offer. How about it Stevie, maybe April 1?

stands for decibels

February 17th, 2012
8:10 am

shoot, I’m never gonna leave if these intelligent conservatives don’t stop pestering me with logical points…

you do realize that one of the many benefits from HOPE is that it has kept more of the brightest of the bright in-state. Is that a bad thing?

Dude, I’d make all state college totally free to anyone who lives here if I were in charge. I’d mandate it nationwide. You know, the way they do it in civilized countries.

really gone now…

Guy Incognito

February 17th, 2012
8:10 am

Norm

Are you serious, or joshin me? That would be awesome to do after a distillery tour

Keep Up the Good Fight!

February 17th, 2012
8:11 am

Means testing should be encouraged. Part of the problem is that if “everyone” gets a contribution, the profit universities and others just raise their tuitions to cover that “scholarship”.

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:12 am

“I can take you for a drive in North Georgia and show you brand new cars that cost twice the amount of the mobile homes they are parked in front of”

When I bought my van for $25,000 – that cost was almost EXACTLY double of what it cost me to buy my single-wide when IT was brand new.

Call it like it is

February 17th, 2012
8:13 am

I find all the Hope debates very interesting. I treat the funding for my childs education much like I treat social security. I don’t count on it being there for me at the end. Therefore when she was at the tender age of 3 months I started a 529 plan for her education. Each month I put money aside for her education as I also do for my retirement. With that being said, I will state the cost of education has gotten beyond silly, and most of that happen when the Hope grants kicked in. Most of the silly fees they charge are a money making scam!

Billings

February 17th, 2012
8:13 am

Bookman’s resentment of the rich extends to children of the rich.

Bookman is into letting government pick winners and losers (Solyndra) in the business world. But not when it comes to education.

For Americans born between 1979 and 1982, just 9 percent of those born into poor households finished college, while 54 percent of those born into the richest 20 percent of households completed their degree.

Stevie Ray

February 17th, 2012
8:13 am

The only thing keeping the “downtrodden” out of the HOPE program is poor score results due to parents lack of involvement (often not intended), no family value in college education, and the idea that UGA et al benefit from higher standards. I’d like to see HOPE expanded to include increased payments to trade schools to help these kids out. I still don’t want to see my kid lose out…public school product, no car, job, and pays a chunk of her freight.

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
8:14 am

Stevie Ray

I’m not sure I buy that we are keeping more of the brightest of the bright in state…..

Anybody got any data?

Steve - USA (I support "None Of The Above")

February 17th, 2012
8:15 am

Keep,

Once again your so drunk on your Kool-aid that you totally miss the point that a new car doesn’t exactly equate to huge sums of money. Where did I say that everyone living in a mobile home is living on the government dole?

Keep on ranting Keep, it is fun to watch.

Butch

February 17th, 2012
8:18 am

Agree with Stevie Ray (8:08am) on this…..in addition, if the pols want to change Hope and move it towards solvency, why not make it a reimbursement plan where the student is reimbursed IF they maintain the grades needed for eligibility? As is, HOPE funds one year of nonsense for kids that are not serious about their education. My daughter is headed to UGA this fall…..would she be going to college without HOPE?….yes. Would she have gone out-of-state without HOPE?…..most likely.

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:19 am

Cost of college has gone up because of free government money

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:19 am

“why not make it a reimbursement plan where the student is reimbursed IF they maintain the grades needed for eligibility”

because student low enough on the economic scare are unlikely to be able to get the funding to GO in the first place. that’s more or less the point of the HOPE scholarship.

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:21 am

Not sure what you mean by this but students never see a penny of HOPE money. It’s applied directly to their accounts, so HOPE money doesn’t go towards buying cars.

It’s the same way that the government funds abortions through Planned Parenthood. Money that would go towards tuition is diverted to buying the car since Hope covers the cost of tuition.

Just using the Conservative abortion funding logic….

I remember

February 17th, 2012
8:21 am

For the liberals, equality of opportunity means equality of outcome. Life has consequences. How we choose matters to our own lives and to the lives of our children. And sometimes to our children’s children. There is not enough money to take to equal out the bad choices of some to align with the good choices of others. Not only that, but the increasing gits of the liberal nanny state eat away at personal responsiblity, personal accountability and at individual risk taking and effort. What you subsidize you get more of. What you tax you get less of.

The left is wrong on two counts. First their goal of closing what they characterize as gaps of eqality is just wrong.It’s not the right role of government and should not be our goal as a soiciety.

Second, it wont work. The problem with Socialism is that sooner or later, you run out of other people’s money.

The left has us on the road to being Greece. It’s time to turn back NOW.

AmVet

February 17th, 2012
8:22 am

…we have long believed that in America, hard work would be rewarded.

And that used to be, more or less, true.

No more.

Now hard work/labor is heavily taxed and punished (a favorite word among the neo-cons), while “unearned income” is revered as a deity and treated as such.

And in many ways, using ones hands to make a living is scorned upon as something for the great unwashed, particularly those filthy foreigners.

And worse, this is what people are teaching their children. Mow the neighbor’s yards??? Get a paper route??? Earn your own money and pay your own way???? That is for THOSE people!

So what do you expect to see at UGA? Or Marist or Westminster…

A bunch of spoon-fed, semi-literate narcissists who have no idea how to open up the hood on that $75,000 car, much less check (or gawd forbid!) change the oil.

But they too are revered. Otherwise how could they buy up all of the cheap crap made in India, China etc for sale at Old Navy and other such places of worship at the local mall?

barking frog

February 17th, 2012
8:22 am

The student is not always subsidized by the parent.
Should the student be penalized because of indifferent parents.

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:23 am

“For the liberals, equality of opportunity means equality of outcome”

When you start your rant with a lie, do you REALLY expect people to read the whole thing?

Adam

February 17th, 2012
8:23 am

Some people are suggesting we stop paying for education altogether because of a cost benefit analysis where they see output of productive workers declining. That is idiotic.

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:23 am

We’re talking about a program to provide more equality of opportunity for kids from less affluent households. The situation of the kids is a result of the decisions or circumstances of the parnts. It is not anything the kid had control over. To argue that children of wealthy parents should qualify for education assistance is like saying the kids of parents who earn $200,000 a year should receive food stamps, because to deny the kids food stamps is to penalize the parents for their success.

AmVet

February 17th, 2012
8:24 am

…what they characterize as gaps…

CHARACTERIZE as gaps?

Hello?

Did you just fall off of the turnip truck?

Adam

February 17th, 2012
8:24 am

Steve: Once again your so drunk on your Kool-aid that you totally miss the point that a new car doesn’t exactly equate to huge sums of money

Tell that to the “I saw the welfare queen at Wal Mart today! She drove away in an ESCALADE” people.

Whatever

February 17th, 2012
8:25 am

As long as the kids qualify academically I have no problem with making it income-based as well.

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:25 am

The answer, which these morons are opposed to especially democrats is just adding an SAT hurdle to balance the budget funding for HOPE

barking frog

February 17th, 2012
8:27 am

The accomplishment of the student should be the basis for
the award.

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:27 am

I don’t really know a lot about HOPE, except the basic premise. Does it also pay for vocational training? Or is it just for standard 4 year colleges?

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:27 am

“For the liberals, equality of opportunity means equality of outcome. ”

Only in your imagination, I remember.

We see your pattern a lot here. Someone from the Right uses a made-up statement about what “Libs” believe and bases their entire argument on it.

If the premise is false, the argument is invalid.

BTW, I Remember, did you know conservatives believe only people who pay at least $50,000 a year in taxes should get to vote? They do this because they are naturally smarter and more talented than the mass of the population and this qualifies them to make decisions for everyone.

Get the idea now?

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:27 am

Education money is going to waste

Maybe they should just end hope altogether and stop robbing poor people with the lottery

Doggone/GA

February 17th, 2012
8:28 am

“The accomplishment of the student should be the basis for the award”

Except…it’s not an “award”

MaJo

February 17th, 2012
8:28 am

“Drive through the parking lots at the University of Georgia, and you’ll see a lot of new automobiles purchased for students by affluent parents pleased that they don’t have to make tuition payments thanks to HOPE. You have to wonder whether subsidized auto purchases represent the best use of increasingly scarce scholarship dollars.”

Wow, this from a guy who normally loves to use facts as a basis for his positions.

kayaker 71

February 17th, 2012
8:28 am

Nationwide, while colleges and universities pride themselves in “diversity” of the student body, only about 40% of minorities that enter a program of higher education graduate….. usually not before 6 or more years of “study”. UGA has a black population of nearly 13%. Less than half graduate, using Hope money, and then it takes them 6 plus years to do it. John McWhorter, head of the dept of linguistics at Berkley, who happens to be black, states that in large part, we are wasting our money on those who either will not study, feel that it’s a “honkey thing”, in his words, and generally are not interested in a higher education. Should we waste a bit less than half of our Hope money on those who really don’t care? What’s the upside in providing money to those who are only going to stay in college one or two years and then drop out?

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:29 am

Jay misstated the objectives of Hope

RB from Gwinnett

February 17th, 2012
8:29 am

Kay – “Lottery-ticket sales have not kept pace with the cost of higher education”.

An honest writer would point out the massive unchecked increases in tuition that ARE THE. AUSE OF THIS PROBLEM. Why is everybody so dang unwilling to discuss that or address it in any way?? Stop the massive increases immediately.

And if you apply means testing, I will never buy another lottery ticket out of principal.

Road Scholar

February 17th, 2012
8:30 am

Granny @ 7:25: Was it as good for you as it was for me?

Normal: Pizza 3.14= Pizza Pi

Stevie Ray: “Ok for those kids to leave the state?”

Ya’ know there are maps and GPS that will let them find their way back! One of the things of benefit would be that they see and experience different things that don’t happen here! GT has a program where for one semester (usually summer) you can go to a sister university in Europe to encounter different cultures and studies.

Kids in south Georgia are already doing it-leaving and not returning home. They go north to school (GT, UGA, etc) and graduate and never return “home” to south Georgia…they seem to stop at Macon. S GA is then boring to them and can’t support that many cllege grads with good paying jobs. Albany calls it the “Brain Drain”.

Butch

February 17th, 2012
8:30 am

“because student low enough on the economic scare are unlikely to be able to get the funding to GO in the first place. that’s more or less the point of the HOPE scholarship.” – DOGGONE

How so? Everyone gets HOPE today if they qualify academically…..

Normal

February 17th, 2012
8:30 am

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:19 am

Prove that, please.

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:30 am

For the liberals, equality of opportunity means equality of outcome.

I love it how people who can barely spell Liberal seem to know everything there is to know about them. Didn’t read past that sentence as I knew it was bovine fecal matter…

Jay

February 17th, 2012
8:31 am

Stands, I’m pulling down your first post. That’s over the line.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

February 17th, 2012
8:31 am

Barking Frog: The student is not always subsidized by the parent. Should the student be penalized because of indifferent parents

Agreed and for those situations there has in the past been a portion of means testing that tests “independence” from parents when that claim has been made.

Granny Godzilla

February 17th, 2012
8:31 am

Liberal Nanny State…..Tell that to the conservatives with crosshairs on my reproductive system….

Butch Cassidy

February 17th, 2012
8:32 am

kayaker 71 – ” What’s the upside in providing money to those who are only going to stay in college one or two years and then drop out?”

It delays for 2 years you getting stuck behind them at Whole Foods buying lobster with their EBT card and taking up valuable parking with their Escalades.

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:32 am

Jm

“The answer, which these morons are opposed to especially democrats is just adding an SAT hurdle to balance the budget funding for HOPE”

Do you think all districts in your state meet a minimum level of instructional materials, programs, and teacher competency, which provides the foundation to excel in the SAT? Because if they do, then you have equality of opportunity. If not, it’s similar to saying athletic, talented kids from a district with no football program have the same chance of getting a football scholarship as kids from districts that spend hundreds of thousands on their football program.

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:33 am

<i.John McWhorter, head of the dept of linguistics at Berkley, who happens to be black, states that in large part, we are wasting our money on those who either will not study, feel that it’s a “honkey thing”, in his words, and generally are not interested in a higher education.

Not trying to pass of someone’s opinion as a given fact, are we???

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:34 am

Morning, Normal

Good to see you have your priorities straight.

Best memories a roll of quarters could buy -

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:34 am

Paul

I think you’ll never get jm to understand that concept. One track minds don’t change directions.

Butch

February 17th, 2012
8:35 am

Paul,

So then we can agree that the real issue is in the public school system, not in the HOPE scholarship?

Normal

February 17th, 2012
8:35 am

I remember

February 17th, 2012
8:21 am

I could agree with what you say, if the path was equal for all, but it’s not and never has been. Education is the great equalizer and the path is much, much harder to navigate if you are a minority or poor or both. The “Fat Cat”, let’s call him, does not want equality in anything, especially education. The “Fat Cat” will always want the deck stacked in his favor. That’s why we need HOPE to be needs based.

josef

February 17th, 2012
8:36 am

Well, now here’s one for me for a mid winter break day off!

First, let’s get real about this “college education” deal. We have inflated it to the point you can’t get an entry level clerical position without the BA/BS. That piece of paper is worth about as much as a high school diploma was a generation or so ago and worse, its holders about as ready to take on a self-sustaining job. When a high school diploma did that, we had free public schools preparing the student. Now, we don’t. Free public education has not kept up. The four year degree should be free at all public colleges and so-called universities. HOPE was a sane move that direction.

Rich man, poor man, beggar man, thief; doctor, lawyer and Indian chief,,,equal access for all.

Graduate school? That’s another matter…but if you are graduating a citizen not capable of making his or her way in society, then you’re moving backward. If that’s not free, then cut the happy horse manure about the public schools doing their job as they did do for a time in our past…and that was the time of our greatest progress…

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:38 am

Brosephus

Well, there is a larger audience out there -

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:39 am

josef

Amen!!!

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:39 am

Butch

I’d say they’re related, not that it’s a decision of one ‘is’ the issue and one ‘is not.’

Jm

February 17th, 2012
8:39 am

Is jay bookman the same person as zell miller? Amazing

Or were they just separated at birth?

Brosephus Lite™ - All the sarcasm, half the words

February 17th, 2012
8:41 am

Paul

That larger audience has the mental dexterity of a fully loaded oil supertanker trying to turn 180 degrees. In other words, I don’t see many minds changing direction here.

Paul

February 17th, 2012
8:41 am

josef

Did Jay tell you what people would be saying today so you could schedule a day off for a topic near and dear to your heart?

barking frog

February 17th, 2012
8:42 am

Jm, when Jay builds a freeway to his back door then he
will be like Zell Miller.

Bosch

February 17th, 2012
8:42 am

Normal,

Haven’t you learned to stay out of jm’s rabbit holes?

kayaker 71

February 17th, 2012
8:45 am

Brocephus, 8:33,

You might want to read his book, “Losing the Race’, before you make comments that hold little to no water. McWhorter is more intelligent than you and I will ever be and he pulls no punches in his evaluation of his minority students at Berkley. He states that the real problem is getting them motivated to succeed. He also states that over half feel that good grades and study are more of a “white” thing and approval of their peers is usually more important to them than success.
In one of her more cogent pieces, Cynthia Tucker, some years ago, ran a good piece on the motivation of those minorities selected for higher education using Hope money. Stated that it wasn’t enough to just provide the money for them and get them to the university. Had more to do with drive and the willingness to succeed which is certainly not happening nationwide or at local universities like UGA. Graduation rates at traditionally black colleges are higher than more “diverse’ environments, according to McWhorter, because most of the students peers are of the same race. My only question in this whole thing is whether or not we are getting our money’s worth subsidizing any student, regardless of race, who is not willing to study and excel or even graduate.

Bosch

February 17th, 2012
8:45 am

When Jay challenges Chris Matthews to a duel, then he will be like Zell Miller. Seriously though, I hope Zell is mad as hell about how his newly adopted party has handled this.