The nation's college financial aid system is badly broken and getting worse. Students from mostly low and middle-income families now face nearly $1 trillion in college-related debt and, despite making such large investments, prospects are still low for college graduation. President Obama and congressional leaders have tried to address this problem by maintaining support for the federal Pell grant and making changes in loan programs. But is it time for a more fundamental rethinking of financial aid? Some students in the Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) may soon have a good answer. Last week, first-time ninth graders in 18 MPS schools...

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    staff and wire services reports