Los Angeles Proposal – One Free Year of College for H.S. Graduates

One free year of community college for high school graduates in Los Angeles is a goal supported by L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti. City officials believe this is the first step towards meeting President Obama’s goal of providing a free community college education to students across the United States. Supporters in L.A. hope to raise $3 million to kick off the program within one year. Below are the specifics of the LAUSD plan.

Santa-Monica-Community-College - One free year of college for H.S. graduates

 (Photo of Santa Monica Community College https://twitter.com/leufven/status/704521820704124929)

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced during his State of the City speech on Thursday, April 14, 2016, that he supports a new proposal which would offer one free year of community college education to all graduates of the LAUSD public high schools.

Mayor Garcetti said, “Tonight Los Angeles will become the largest city in the nation to commit ourselves to a new goal: every hardworking student who graduates from LAUSD will receive one free year of community college.”

School board member Scott Svonkin explained that the program will be paid for with a $3 million fundraising effort, led by the mayor and others.  Supporters hope to implement the plan within one year.  This is the first step in an effort to meet President Obama’s call to make community college free across the country.

For students who are interested in a community college certificate program or Associates Degree, one year of free college would mean they will be able to complete at least half of their program at no cost.  In some cases, within one year they will be able to complete a Career Technical Educational program that would qualify them for a variety of jobs … as a home health aide, cosmetician, or caterer, for example.  Within two years, many students would be able to get certificates in interior design, automotive technology, computer maintenance, culinary arts, drafting, graphic arts and much more.

For other students, this opportunity will allow them to receive one free year of education towards a four-year degree.  Students could complete their first two years in a community college, then transfer to one of  California’s state colleges or universities.

The advantage of supporting the students of Los Angeles with this program is that they will take out fewer student loans and carry a smaller debt burden when they are finished with college.


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