By September 11, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

Analysis: Future of TOPS becomes perennial Louisiana debate

Louisiana lawmakers appear caught in a near-perpetual loop, repeatedly debating how to stabilize the TOPS free college tuition program and continually reaching no agreement on its future.

This latest iteration of the discussion about the popular entitlement program comes with a 10-member study group created by and populated with lawmakers that’s charged with trying to determine ways to ensure TOPS’ “long-term viability.”

But while the method for approaching the conversation has changed, the central debate remains the same: Should the nearly 20-year-old program be needs-based or merit-based? Or should lawmakers just acknowledge there’s no willingness to heavily rewrite the rules of a program that so many of the state’s middle-class families support…


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