It turns out free college is very expensive. Who could have guessed?

The Daily Signal reports:

Europe Has Free College. Here’s How It’s Working Out.

Free college sounds great! Who doesn’t like free stuff?

To make the idea sound even more appealing, advocates continuously cite Europe as an example of success. Many European countries offer their citizens tuition-free higher education, so why can’t America?

The truth is that free college in Europe is no success story. Rather, it should serve as a cautionary tale for the United States.

European-style tuition-free higher education has proved one thing beyond the shadow of a doubt: “Free” college is actually wildly expensive…

The increasingly hefty price tag attached to college tuition reflects the fact that colleges have no incentive to keep their prices low because students can so easily take out massive loans from Washington.

One of the few factors putting any downward pressure on higher education costs is the growing criticism that universities receive for leaving so many students burdened with massive amounts of student loan debt.

Under a fully financed government system, however, universities would receive no such scrutiny. They’d simply pass the bill to Washington and let lawmakers take the heat from unhappy taxpayers.

That cumulative bill would quickly skyrocket. Many European countries that have experimented with “free college” are finding that approach to be simply unaffordable. Germany, for example, saw a 37% increase in the college subsidy cost to taxpayers once public universities removed tuition.


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