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When did parents start going hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt to finance their child's education?

I have several friends who have done this in the last few years, and I don't understand it. I graduated from high school in 1989, and I paid for my college education with student loans (in my own name), pell grants, and money from working. I graduated with 90k in student loans, and finally got them paid off a few years ago. Almost all of my friends my age financed their education in a similar fashion. My neighbor just refinanced his house to pull out cash to pay for his kids college education. Another friend is 200k in debt to pay for his two kid's education, and both of those kids are barely making passing grades. They will be in school for at least another two years, so presumably he will be 400k in debt by the time they graduate with degrees in education (so they won't be making much). This is a guy who makes 70k a year. It is going to take him forever to pay that off. The kids take no responsibility...I don't get it.


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