Paying for College: Parents vs. Students

Money3(CNN) — The Wall Street Journal reports that students are taking on more debt than ever to pay for college. In 2012, students themselves borrowed 18 percent the cost of their college education.

Here’s how families are paying for college, according to the Wall Street Journal:
30 percent are coming from grants and scholarships
27 percent from parents’ savings
18 percent from students borrowing
11 percent from student income and borrowing
and 5 percent from relatives and friends

With all this debt, students are having a hard time. The Department of Education says one in ten students default on their loans within a year.

So should parents be paying for college? The Wall Street Journal spoke to some experts to get both sides.

One expert is quoted as saying, “Yes, parents should pay even if it means borrowing money to do so, or even using part of their retirement savings.” They argue that it sends a message to their children that it matters and they need to work hard.

But another expert reportedly says parents shouldn’t be on the hook. Putting students in the driver’s seat will make them value their college education more. And this will prompt students to make smarter decisions about college.

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