Early Pushes and Student Debt
By Katherine Pena
Having the right education gives you the upper hand, but what is the cost to obtain it? On the issue of education, President Barack Obama believes with financial support for college students, and a early push to young kids, we could help lower the unemployment rate and restore middle class security. Education is very important in making it in our country. For years now, the United States has fallen behind many countries when it comes to education. Decades ago just having a high school diploma was enough; Today's advances in technology require a great deal of education, though a bachelor's degree may not be quite enough. People all over the country are having to return to school in order to seek better opportunities. However, many people struggle with the financial responsibility that comes with higher education.
Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama has a plan that will help students afford college and also begin the push for higher education to young children who are years away from high school. Mr. Obama states that "nothing is more important than giving everyone the best education possible…" and to gain the lead in the 21st century we have to put an emphasis on education from "the day they start preschool to the day they start their career." The President is proposing bills that will give states a chance to take greater control of their school systems. Furthermore, he is proposing reforms that will help ease student debt including Pay as you earn, loan forgiveness after twenty-five years--that is if you are paying it off of course--, and new information that will help students compare financial aid packages before they choose one.
Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, has criticized President Obama's increase in government funding of Head Start programs, insisting that it be taken over by the states. One of Romney's advisors regarded Head Start programs as a "social experience" that does not satisfy an academic experience, and "[does] not [prepare] children for school." In the Common Core, Obama pushed states to adopt new academic standards and has had large success. However, conservatives have called it a "federal takeover of curriculum…" On the other hand, West Sacramento Mayor Chris Cabaldon responds to Obama's No Child Left Behind Waiver Plan--allowing some schools to implement other standards for student success than those of the mandated 100 percent math and reading proficiency-- saying, "increased flexibility should lead to a more productive relationship between the federal government, states, and local school districts…" 
As a struggling college student myself, I am really interested in seeing Obama's plan unfold for educational assistance and student debt payoff. I currently have my own share of student debt--even though I am years away from graduating--, so I am excited to see how Obama's plans will affect the lives of many students like me. I support the President's view on getting an early start in children's lives pertaining to their education. As the President has stated, “If we’re going to get serious about building an economy that lasts, we’ve got to get serious about education,” When I place my ballot, I will have in mind young preschoolers, our country’s unemployment rate, and the ties of education between them; I want to do my part so that we can grow and prosper as a nation.
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