The Agenda

Rethinking Public Higher Education

Anya Kamenetz’s new paper on how to reform public higher education is so good that it’s taking me a while to fully process it. Fortunately, Dylan Matthews’ brain is cobweb-free, and he has written an able summary of Anya’s work.

One of Anya’s central premises is that subsidizing the ever-rising cost of higher education is a far less promising strategy than actually changing the business model of higher education to make it more cost-effective and responsive to the needs of students. But her strategy for doing so actually involves reversing the casualization of the higher education workforce, a development she laments. More on that to come.

(Andrew P. Kelly of the American Enterprise Institute makes a related point on new calls for a system of free public colleges — shifting who pays the bill without changing the underlying cost structure of higher education won’t do much good.)

Reihan Salam — Reihan Salam is executive editor of National Review and a National Review Institute policy fellow.

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