In The Classroom

Protest at UH over tuition hikes, budget cuts

Friday, March 05, 2010

Students fed up with the price of education protested Thursday at the University of Houston. It was part of a nationwide effort. Students in 33 states are protested today.

The group Students for a Democratic Society at UH organized a demonstration on campus to take part in the national Day of Action.

Students say they have been backed into a corner when it comes to the cost of college. At U of H in the last 18 years tuition has been raised ten times, and this year students have been slapped with another hike of almost four percent, 3.95 to be exact.

Things could only get worse from here as Governor Rick Perry has asked state agencies and universities to cut their budgets by five-percent for the next fiscal budget.

So today we have students as well as teachers saying they are fed up with the rising cost of tuition that mostly affects low income students.

"The rate of tuition increase has just been enormous. From 1990 to 2000, tuition went from $20 a credit hour to $40 a credit hour. And from 2000 to today, it went from $40 a credit hour to $180 a credit hour. That is mostly hurting students and their parents," said Rob Block of Students for a Democratic Society.

There were two demonstrations planned Thursday night. And on Sunday UH students will also travel to Austin to join other students from across the state in protesting statewide hikes and budget cuts.

There was a similar scene at the University of Texas in Austin where hundreds of students angry over tuition and fee increases. The UT Board of Regents this week voted to increase tuition for this fall.

In California, students from the University of California-Santa Cruz blocked two entrances to the university. The school told staff members to stay away from the campus. California is expected to have the bulk of organized protests in response to the last two years of cuts of $17 billion from schools and colleges statewide.

The state of Georgia is also making cuts, so students from the University of Georgia protested there. State lawmakers are facing a one billion dollar shortfall.

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university of houston, in the classroom, erik barajas
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