Andrea Levere recently wrote an op Ed piece for the New York Times entitled, "This Little Piggy Went to College". It highlighted a program in San Francisco where every public school kindergarten student gets a College Savings Account with $50 deposited. One mom who struggles to make ends meet reports that she has saved $20 a month to add to the account…now worth $785.
While these programs are small in number, they are large in potential. Levere reports that a study in Children and Youth Services Review indicates that low-income families with as little as $500 in an account are three times more likely to attend college and four times more likely to graduate. Researchers at Washington University in St Louis also report that young people with C.S.A.'s have more positive social and emotional development…and Mom's are less depressed and more optimistic.
Children and Mom's are not the only ones who are happy, elected officials with both "R's" and "D's" think that it makes sense. With legislation developing at the state and federal levels, perhaps there is merit in replacing a "hand out" for today with a "start up" for tomorrow…and what the impact on college debt!?!