Washington’s Guaranteed Education Tuition program, or GET, is back after a 2 year hiatus.
The GET program allows parents to prepay the cost of college tuition. Account-holders are offered a guarantee that 100 GET units will cover the tuition and fees of the most expensive public university in the state, the University of Washington.
The great recession played havoc with the program because it resulted in ever increasing tuition costs. Then things became more problematic for the program, when the legislature decided to reduce those tuition rates.
GET executive director Betty Lochner says this past summer, they decided to recalculate the value of the units, and give investors something similar to a stock split.
“And so we needed time to reset the price. We actually gave money back to some customers to try to reset the payout value so that 100 units still equals a year of college. During that interim time, the coat of the program was much higher than tuition, so it was a time of adjustment to make sure all the customers were made whole,” said Lochner.
The plan has now reopened for those who want to start new accounts, and for those who already have an account and want to continue to buy GET units in lump sums, or want to establish new monthly contracts.
Some 50 thousand students have used GET in all 50 states and 14 foreign countries.