White House Says Freeze Won’t Damage Higher Ed

As far as higher education’s financing goes, the Obama administration’s proposed three-year budget “freeze” (scare quote explanation here) probably won’t have much impact. The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that:

Obama-administration officials…,said… that the restriction would not affect Pell Grants and largely would spare other education programs.

“Pell Grants will be taken care of within our budget,” Robert L. Nabors, deputy director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, said in a briefing. And program areas that include education and energy research are “at the top of the list” for available money, Mr. Nabors said.

The administration introduced its budget freeze plan only a few hours after it presented its strategy to address excessive student loan debt.

Nabors pointed out that individual government funded programs at colleges and universities will face spending cuts, though he did not go into details. Pell Grants, the main sources of access to higher education for low income students, will remain as is. Government funded research is a huge source of income for universities, however. It’s unclear if the freeze will change that revenue stream.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer