The College Puzzle Blog
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Dr. Michael W. Kirst

Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University since 1969.
Dr. Kirst received his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard. Before joining the Stanford University faculty, Dr. Kirst held several positions with the federal government, including Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty. He was a former president of the California State Board of Education. His book From High School to College with Andrea Venezia was published by Jossey Bass in 2004.

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My blog discusses the important and complex subjects of college completion, college success, student risk factors (for failing), college readiness, and academic preparation. I will explore the pieces of the college puzzle that heavily influence, if not determine, college success rates.

Stimulus Bill Intensifies But Does Not Change Federal Role

While the stimulus will be helpful for college success, it does not include many new concepts for funding. It increases Pell grants dramatically, has a new tax credit plan, 3.5 billion for construction,.5 billion for work study, and other indirect aid through state government allocations. Other than yet another tax credit scheme , it breaks little new ground. I am skeptical that tax credits up to $160,000 per couple will create more low income enrollment in college. The Clinton tax credits went to the middle class who would have attended college anyway.
Another concern is wether this new money will be temporary or part of the future federal base. But the stimulus will provide much more money than postsecondary education would have received through the regular appropriation process. Will more students complete college because of this bill? No one knows.

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