Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/950/25513
From The Socialist newspaper, 24 May 2017
Corbyn's pledge: free education - May's plan: hike fees
Socialist Students marching for free education, 19.11.16, photo James Ivens (Click to enlarge)
João Félix, Cardiff University Socialist Students
In an announcement which will galvanise the support of millions of young people, Jeremy Corbyn has pledged to immediately scrap university tuition fees for students.
Corbyn's team said it would write off those fees, benefitting 400,000 students this autumn. It also announced a Corbyn-led government would seek a deal so EU students in Britain and UK students abroad could benefit from the same arrangement.
This is a big step forward in the battle for free education. If implemented, it will have life-changing effects for hundreds of thousands of working class young people - put off going to university to avoid a lifetime of debt, an average of £44,000 per graduate.
Corbyn should also pledge the scrapping of all existing tuition fee debt. It has risen to a staggering £86 billion in total.
Corbyn has rightly accused the Tories of having "held students back for too long" by trebling tuition fees to a maximum of more than £9,000 a year.
His pledge reverses this rip-off measure for funding higher education, introduced by Tony Blair, which the Socialist Party has long campaigned against.
Every part of the Labour Party, including Welsh Labour, should unequivocally back this manifesto pledge.
For years, education has been the victim of capitalism, treated not as a fundamental right but as a commodity to be exploited. This announcement is a milestone in our fight to change that.
Labour should follow this by pledging free education for all: scrapping former students' debts, and tuition fees for non-EU international students as well.
Students from outside the EU pay double in fees and struggle to study and live in the UK, especially with the racist, bureaucratic requirements of the Conservative government.
All students should be treated equally, regardless of which part of the globe they were born in.
This announcement could well be a turning point in the election. It would really improve the lives of working class people. And it shows that socialist policies are not just popular, but essential.
Back Corbyn's youth pledges
- Free university education
- Living grants for university students
- Reinstating 'education maintenance allowance' for 16 to 18-year-olds
- Votes at 16!
- Raising the minimum wage
- Reinstating housing benefit for 18 to 21-year-olds
- Ending unpaid internships
Donate to the Socialist Party
The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
- The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.
In The Socialist 24 May 2017:
What we think
Manchester bombing: unite against terror, war and racism
Socialist Party news and analysis
Corbyn in - Tories out
Corbyn's pledge: free education - May's plan: hike fees
May's 'dementia tax' wobble vs Corbyn's extra funds
Theresa 'Lunch Snatcher' May vs Jeremy 'free meals' Corbyn
Work doesn't pay: Tory policies have meant another wages cut
Tory oil spoils v poisonous air
Single market = TTIP
Corbyn and Brexit
Corbyn and Brexit: Why a socialist approach to the EU is the only way forward
Bias in the bosses' media
The media, May and the general election
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Wave after wave: 5,000 at 'rock festival' Corbyn rally in Hull
Things are changing: 20,000 sing for Corbyn at Wirral rock festival!
Socialist Students call on chicken May to debate Corbyn
Blairite warmonger misses chance to fight on Corbyn's popular policies
March of 5,000 against Tory plans to cut 1,000 Bristol teachers
Labour council's threat to children's care centre
Newcastle: fresh faces and the fight in Labour
Workplace news and analysis
Argos: aggressive bosses met by determined strike
Human rights workers strike in support of sacked union members
Window workers walk out after seeing through contract changes
Third strike against driver-only operated trains suspended but dispute continues
Manchester: housing maintenance workers plan strikes every week
PCS DWP conference 2017
Workplace news in brief
National Shop Stewards Network conference
International socialist news and analysis
Trump regime faces deepening crisis
International news in brief
Socialist readers' comments and reviews
'From Militant to the Socialist Party' - new book now available
Gentrification, class and race in Brixton film
Capitalist journal's warning to the bosses: Marx was right, watch out!
The Socialist inbox
The Socialist 24 May 2017 |
Join the Socialist
| Audio | PDF | ebook