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States' Higher Education Funds Rebound After Recession



By Catherine Groux
Posted January 23, 2013 12:00 PM

The amount of money states spend on higher education has rebounded slightly.
The amount of money states spend on higher education has rebounded slightly.

During the recession, states across the country were forced to make drastic cuts to higher education as they saw their budgets dwindling. A new report compiled by researchers at Illinois State University and the State Higher Education Executive Officers shows that in 2011-2012, state spending on higher education fell by 7.5%, The Chronicle of Higher Education reports.

However, as the economy begins to bounce back, this trend is slowly reversing. In the fiscal year that began last July 1, states spent only 0.4% less on postsecondary education. Additionally, in the current fiscal year, 30 states increased their budgets for colleges and financial aid.

For this reason, the report highlighted the rebound of spending on higher education with optimism.

"Barring a further downturn in the economy, the relatively small overall change ... suggests that higher education may be at the beginning stages of a climb out of the fiscal trough caused by the last recession," reads a statement accompanying the survey data.

Despite this news, states across the country are expected to feel the lingering effects of the recession for years to come. Higher education leaders in Texas, for example, are currently working to prevent proposed budget cuts of 2 to 3 million for the current biennium, the Statesman reports.

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