Rep. Melanie Stambaugh takes on the high cost of textbooks
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Anyone who has gone to college knows the staggering cost of a single trip to the bookstore. Republican lawmaker Melanie Stambaugh of Puyallup has been studying ways to reduce the burden on students. Ruth Johnson reports from Olympia.
Johnson: Stambaugh proposes a pilot program already tried at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Grants would be offered to four-year universities, allowing educators to use what are called ‘open education resources’–teaching materials the student can access on-line, instead of paying for a textbook.
In Massachusetts, it seems to be working.
Stambaugh: “They made a 10-thousand dollar initial investment. They did ten grants to faculty members. And, within one year, those ten courses save students 70-thousand dollars in textbook costs. If we can have that same sort of return for students here in Washington State, that would be a great benefit.”
Johnson: If passed, Stambaugh’s House Bill 2680 would establish the Washington open education pilot program at state and regional universities and the Evergreen State College this year. Instead of paying $250 for textbook, students could pay as little as $20 on their course materials.
Ruth Johnson, Olympia.
###Washington State House Republican Communications
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