The campus of Georgetown University in May. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

U.S. universities and colleges are facing pressure from students to lower tuition rates amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Financial Times reports.

Why it matters: Some students argue that they should pay less if schools are only offering online classes, while many institutions are bracing for the pandemic's impact on their budgets.

Driving the news: Georgetown University announced this week that it will offer a 10% tuition discount to students who are not invited to live on campus, the Washington Post reports.

  • The university announced the discount after roughly 2,000 students signed a petition accusing the school of “ highway robbery” for maintaining its tuition fees at nearly $58,000.

Princeton University and Williams College in Massachusetts also issued tuition cuts, while other institutions, like Harvard University and Yale University, raised tuition for the upcoming academic year.

By the numbers: More than 90% of college students said they believe they should pay reduced tuition fees if schools are exclusively offering online classes, according to a College Pulse survey of 5,000 full-time undergraduate students across 215 universities.

  • 73% said online learning is less effective than in-person instruction to help students develop specific skills.

The big picture: Because of the pandemic, universities may see a drop in revenues from decreased enrollment, which could put many institutions over the edge, Axios' Erica Pandey reports.

  • Schools are also facing pressure from the Trump administration to fully reopen this fall.
  • On Friday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced that new international students may not enter the U.S. this fall if their courses are entirely online.
  • Many universities rely on tuition from international students, and the directive could dissuade some foreign students from enrolling this coming semester.

Go deeper

Oct 21, 2020 - Health

San Francisco public schools likely won't reopen before the end of the year

Fourth graders wash their hands at Bel Aire Elementary School on Oct. 16 in Tiburon, Calif. Photo: Lea Suzuki/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images

San Francisco public school officials do not anticipate bringing students back into the classroom before the end of the year, partially due to limited coronavirus testing capacity, the San Francisco Examiner reports.

The big picture: Schools that have reopened their doors in the U.S. generally have not experienced large coronavirus outbreaks, an early sign that they may not be the super-spreaders some experts had feared.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
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Winter coronavirus threat spurs new surge of startup activity

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U.S. coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are surging, with cold weather arriving before even the best-case scenario for a widely distributed vaccine. Now we're also beginning to see an increase in coronavirus-related startup funding, focused on both testing and pharma.

Driving the news: Gauss, a Silicon Valley computer vision startup focused on health care, tells Axios that it's raised $10 million to accelerate development and commercialization of an at-home rapid antigen test for COVID-19.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Axios-Ipsos poll: Federal response has only gotten worse — The swing states where the pandemic is raging.
  2. Health: Hospitals face a crush — 13 states set single-day case records last week.
  3. Business: Winter threat spurs new surge of startup activity.
  4. Media: Pandemic causes TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota cases traced to three Trump campaign events.
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.