Monday, August 29, 2011

Note to Indiana Schools: begging is not a strategy

I have always admired the incredible passion and determination of Robert Enlow and the Friedman Foundation based in Indiana.  They have worked so hard for students and now have a school choice program in Indiana.  According to the Huffington Post, there is considerable pent up demand as over 3,200 students are leaving their public school and using the vouchers to go to a better school.

People are leaving schools that do not meet their needs. In the real world, if your customers leaves, you find ways to attract them back by providing the service they demand - in this case actually educating the students. 

But the response in Indiana is to whine about losing tax dollars to private schools and begging parents to keep your students in a school that doesn't meet that student's needs.  Hopefully, cooler heads will prevail  next year and instead of begging, schools will look for ways to improve so that they can attract more students.  What a great deal for Indiana students!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

More For Profit Cuts

Military cuts to Tuition Assistance are yet another slice to for-profit enrollments/revenue.  Many military use for-profits to earn their education. Just another hit.

Enrollment Down at For-Profits

Sharp contrast to the blogpost below where Straighterline.com is doubling enrollment.

At for profits, the Wall Street Journal, enrollments are down as much as 45%:

"New-student enrollments have plunged—in some cases by more than 45%—in recent months, reflecting two factors: Companies have pulled back on aggressive recruiting practices amid criticism over their high student-loan default rates. And many would-be students are questioning the potential pay-off for degrees that can cost considerably more than what's available at local community colleges."

Economics do work - for-profits were way too expensive for what students received so it was a only a matter of time before revenues plunged.

Efficient and Cost Effective Higher Ed

New York Times with a nice piece on Burk Smith and Straighterline.com entitled "A Way to Speed the Pace".  Their online program allows students to complete their gen ed courses at significantly lower rates than going to a university - plus you can complete the course on your own time.  The idea of completing freshman year for less than $1,000 and doing it in significantly less time is a game changer in higher education.

College is not affordable and Burk and his incredibly awesome team are fixing that.  He is not just cutting tuition by a third over going to a state school, it also eliminates a full year of housing, living expenses and for many, lost wages.  Literally for a tenth of the cost, students can complete their freshman year - and do it in six months. 

It's not just the earth moving in Baltimore - there is also a huge paradigm shift.