Some college tuition rates are as costly as a housing down payment.
But former Cal State Stanislaus administrator and current Assemblymember Kristin Olsen, (R) Modesto, says entering a contract to purchase a house is very different from paying for college. She says many schools don’t currently provide students with a “predictable and reliable, reasonable tuition rate.” With housing payments, she says people know ahead of time what the investment will cost and what monthly payments will be.
Olsen says unexpected tuition hikes attribute to students dropping out. She’s proposed AB 138, a long term approach to tackle surprise tuition increases. If passed, the bill will guarantee freshman entering college with a four-year fixed tuition rate, and transfers with a two-year fixed rate.
The bill will only apply to the 23 Cal State schools, because the legislature only has oversight over public universities. Olsen says she will encourage UC schools to adopt the bill if it passes, but the state constitution does not allow passing mandates to UC campuses.
Olsen realizes her bill passing is not the only thing that will keep students in school. She stresses staying in college is a three way partnership. She says the state needs to fund schools, the schools need to provide a predictable tuition rate and students need to maintain a good academic standing and full time load.
For current students concerned about rising costs, another bill, AB 67 proposes to freeze tuition rates for them. Olsen is a also co-author on that bill.