But are students really paying more out of pocket this year? Not necessarily.
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• American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This Act expanded the Hope tax credit for educational expenses. It also made more Federal Work-Study opportunities available to students, accounting for a 37% one-year increase after a full decade of continual decline.
• Elimination of private lender involvement in educational loans. On July 1, 2010, the federal government became the sole source for federal education loans. Still, the high sticker price is the headline that continues to shock students applying to or already in college. You may be wondering why it’s so difficult to determine what students are really paying—here’s why: • Student aid only goes to those who qualify. About one-third of all college students are paying the full tuition and fees cost.
• Other expenses like room and board, books and transportation are continuing to rise and often aren’t covered by grant assistance for those who do qualify.
• It’s also important to take the toll of the recession into account. Family incomes have been virtually stagnant while some families have been affected by unemployment and loss of income. College Board continues its report to say that while the increase in grant aid was beneficial this year that may not be the case in the future. The increase in student aid is likely not to continue each year while higher education tuition and fees will. According to Mark Kantrowitz, a well-respected financial aid expert, Pell Grant recipients will not see another increase in the maximum amount and the Hope tax credit scholarship will decrease if Congress does not extend the rate or make it permanent, as President Obama has asked. Essentially, this correlation is only temporary.