State Disinvestment in Higher Education: Student Debt Issue


February 29, 2024

State funding for Illinois colleges and universities in FY 2024 was still some 39% lower than it was in FY 2000 when adjusting for inflation and this long-term disinvestment in higher education over the last 20 years has had significant consequences. It has forced public universities to increase their tuition and fees, causing the average cost of in-state tuition at Illinois’ public universities to increase 121 percent, substantially higher than the national average in this time period, making college in Illinois considerably less affordable. It has forced virtually all Illinois students to incur student loans in order to pay for college, especially Black and Latinx students, perpetuating an educational attainment gap. This report touches on the widespread issue of student debt and why Illinois needs to prioritize investing adequately in its public higher education system.

Topics:Higher Education

Tags:Illinois Education Funding, Illinois General Fund, State Budget, Educational Attainment