What Price Glory?
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far, the reaction of leaders of UC, CSU and state policymakers alike
is to "study the problem." The studies vary in their specific projections,
but not their overall conclusions. "California appears to be in
a state of denial," says a report by Santa Monica-based RAND. "Budgets
are no longer considered from the perspective of what is required
to support the needs of the state's higher education sector, but
rather of how much of the budget is left to be spent on it." RAND
predicts that in 2010 nearly 1 million California students who are
qualified to go to college under the prevailing Master Plan will
be shut out either because there will be no space for them or they
will be unable to afford the costs.
Callan, executive director of the Higher Education Policy Center,
a San Jose-based think tank, advises all those concerned about the
future of higher education in California to wake up. "Everyone will
have to make extraordinary efforts immediately or we will lose higher
education," he warns. "Ten years from now, we'll be talking about
the crisis in higher education the same way we talk about our failing
K-12 schools today."
Richardson, a senior writer with The Sacramento Bee, is the author
of the recently published Willie Brown: A Biography.