A new way to "pay it forward" and make higher education much more affordable is beginning to catch on.
When we first asked you to contact your state legislators, this plan was being developed only in Oregon. Now legislators have introduced or announced bills in MD, MA, NJ, OH, PA, VT, WA, and the U.S. Congress.
Click here to see how "pay it forward" works and to tell your state legislators about it.
Long-term declines in state higher education funding and more recent severe budget cuts are pushing college out of reach for middle class and low-income students. Students and their families are forced to choose to either take on massive debt or shelve plans to attend college.
A new plan called "Pay It Forward" recently passed in Oregon. Under Pay It Forward students would attend college with no upfront tuition. Instead, students would contribute a small, fixed-percentage of their income -- about 3 or 4 percent -- for a set number of years after college -- between 10 and 25 depending on where they attend school. Contributions would be placed back into the state's education fund and enable the next class of students to receive the same education free from massive, life-crippling student loans.
Click here to propose this model to your state legislature.
Leaders from across the country are considering action on Pay It Forward -- but they need to know there's a movement of support behind it.
Email your state legislators and let them know you support Pay It Forward and expanded funding for public higher education.
And please forward this email widely to like-minded friends, students, teachers, parents, and neighbors.
-- The RootsAction.org team
P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Coleen Rowley, Frances Fox Piven, and many others.
P.P.S. This work is only possible with your financial support. Please donate.
Economic Opportunity Institute
One-Page PDF on How it Works
Katrina vanden Heuvel: An Oregon Trail to End Student Debt