According to a 1999 survey of 7,900 students and parents by the National Household Education Surveys Program:
· Asked to estimate the annual tuition at a four-year public college, students and parents' answers typically ranged from $5,400 to $5,800. In reality, the average tuition for in-state undergraduates for one year at public institutions in 1998-99 was approximately $3,200.
· Only 52 percent of 11th- and 12th-graders had obtained college cost information. And their parents didn't do much better: Just 54 percent reported looking into the price of college for their children.
· Among the parents of college-bound students, 59 percent of the parents of ninth- and 10th-graders and 63 percent of the parents of 11th- and 12th-graders reported setting money aside for college.
· The United States, once first in the world, now ranks 11th in college participation leading to a bachelor's degree.
· When students enter high school, 91 out of every 100 say they plan to go to college, according to the federal report.
· But by the time the students are 19 years old, 30 of every 100 who entered ninth grade have fallen behind or dropped out, and only 38 of the 70 who earned high school diplomas enroll in college,
· more than 7,900 students in grades 6 through 12 and their parents showed that few of them knew anything about college costs. Two-thirds of the students, as well as nearly half their parents, said they couldn't estimate what tuition and fees are for the kind of college the student hoped to attend.
From the Harris Poll commissioned by Sallie Mae Fund, 2002
· Information about financial aid matters. The more a young adult knows about financial aid, the more likely they are to attend college.
· Nearly half of all parents (48%) wished they had more information about how to pay for college.
· Those who need financial aid information the most – understand it the least.
- 60% of parents with incomes under $50,000 said they need more information about how to pay for college compared to only 37% of parents with incomes of $75,000 or more.
- 66% of African-American parents and 62% of Hispanic-American parents said they need more information about how to pay for college, compared to only 44% of white parents.
- 57% of parents who completed high school, or less, said they need more financial aid information, compared to only 33% of parents with a college degree or more education.
- Low income and Hispanic-American parents are most likely to say that they have "no idea" how they are going to pay for college.
· Parents with incomes under $25,000 (45%) were three times more likely to say that they had "no idea" how they are going to pay for college, compared to parents with incomes of $75,000 or more (15%).
· 50% of Hispanic-American parents said they had "no idea" how they were going to pay for college, compared to 23% of white parents and 26% of African-American parents.
· Lowest income and Hispanic-American families get financial aid information later than upper income and other families.
- Average age when child first received financial aid information:
Under $25,000 - 16 years old
Over $75,000 -14 years old
Hispanic-American families -17 years old
Other families-15 years old
· Many parents and young adults are not aware of even basic sources of financial aid.
- 58% of all parents and 72% of young adults planning to attend college did not name scholarships as a source of financial aid.
- 62% of all parents and 65% of young adults planning to attend college did not name grants as a source of financial aid.
- 64% of all parents and 71% of young adults planning to attend college did not name loans as a source of financial aid.
· Lower income and minority parents are less likely to be able to identify common sources of financial aid.
- Between 75% and 79% of parents with incomes under $25,000 did not identify scholarships, grants or loans as sources of financial aid, compared to 55% to 63% of parents with incomes of $75,000 or more.
- 74% of African-American parents did not identify scholarships, compared to 53% of white parents.
- 83% of Hispanic-American parents did not mention grants, compared to 58% of white parents.
· Just over one in four (26%) young adults not currently in college, but who considered college, would have been more likely to attend college if they had had better information about how to pay for college.
From The Congressional Fact Sheet by the United States Student Association, 2001
· Of the 19 million 10-14 year olds in the United States, 20% live below the poverty line; 30% of those adolescents are of minority status.
· 83% of children from high income families attend college, 56% of children from middle income families attend college, and only 34% of low-income children attend college
· 25% of eligible students do not know financial aid is available. An additional 23% do not know how to apply.
· 80% of students from families who have early information about financial aid go on to college. Only 55% of students from families that don’t receive early information go on to college.
· 71% of students with at least one parent holding a bachelor’s degree apply to college. Only 26% of first generation students apply to college.
From the Education Commission of the States, 2003
· While the average cost of college tuition rose 110% between 1981 and 2001, median family income only rose 27% in the same period.
· From a survey sponsored by the American Association of University Women
· 70% of respondents worry more about the cost of college education for their children than the cost of a house, a car, or secure retirement