Obama’s Bold Plan to Reshape American Higher Education

Lynn Russo Whylly's picture

As a rule, speechwriters put the most dramatic parts of a president’s agenda front and center in televised speeches, leaving the boring policy details to the supplemental notes. Last night, the Obama administration did the opposite: the higher education section of the State of the Union address was much the same as last year’s, focusing intensely on college affordability and putting institutions on notice that the gravy train of public support for rising prices would have to end. But the truly earth-shaking policy initiatives were left for the supplemental policy document released directly after the speech, in which the Obama administration proposed the biggest change to federal higher education policy since at least the Higher Education Amendments of 1972.

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