Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/963/26149
From The Socialist newspaper, 20 September 2017
Tories in retreat - kick them out
Fight tuition fees
Socialist Students marching for free education, 19.11.16, photo James Ivens (Click to enlarge)
Ellen Kenyon Peers, Goldsmiths Socialist Students
News that Labour would win a parliamentary majority if a general election were held tomorrow has spurred on Tory chancellor Philip Hammond to produce a report recommending a £5,000 reduction in tuition fees over a three-year course.
This latest, embarrassing retreat by the Tories demonstrates how desperate they have become to maintain power.
But any reduction in fees will be welcomed by students and it's clear a big factor behind this is that the Tories fear a mass movement for free education.
The government has been under pressure on all fronts. Its justification for fees has been undermined, not least following the news of vast cash resources held by many universities.
The prohibitively expensive £9,250 a year maximum tuition fee has contributed to a drop in university applicants for the first time since fees were raised in 2012.
The 6.1% interest rate for tuition fees disproportionately affects poorer students struggling to pay off the loan, as it rises with inflation. Better-off students who can repay it quickly gain the upper hand, even after entering the job market with the same qualification.
Students demonstrating in London, photo Isai Priya (Click to enlarge)
The interest rate includes an additional 3% on top of inflation which has never been fully explained by parliament.
This can add thousands to students' loan repayments once graduates have reached the relatively low £21,000 earnings threshold. All this while university vice-chancellors' pay averages over £270,000 a year.
Corbyn's left-leaning manifesto policies, including to immediately introduce free education, proved extremely popular with young people during the election, winning seats in former Tory strongholds like Canterbury.
But unfortunately since then Labour has refused to commit to cancelling student debt despite Jeremy Corbyn's hint during the election campaign that it would.
The Socialist Party and Socialist Students fight for abolishing tuition fees, cancelling student debt and a £10 an hour minimum wage to pave the way for a brighter future for young people.
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In The Socialist 20 September 2017:
Fight tuition fees
Why do young people need socialism?
Socialist readers' comments and reviews
Refreshing, anticapitalist - but little pointing a way forward
Interview: the "socialist John Le Carré"
The Socialist Inbox
What we think
Labour conference: Corbyn's support must be used to defeat Blairites
International socialist news and analysis
Brutal repression of Rohingya people sparks massive humanitarian crisis
Socialist Party news and analysis
Grenfell inquiry begins: not sufficient, not trusted
Strike to save our NHS!
Fight expansion of disastrous 'Universal Credit' welfare system
Defuse the consumer debt time bomb: nationalise the banks!
Workplace news and analysis
Deal concludes Barts health strike - "We have raised our heads high"
Bin workers vote to continue action following rally
CWU strike ballot - why I'm voting Yes
Fight university's 'sackers' charter'
McStrike solidarity event
London Buses safety campaign
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Protest to pressure Labour to scrap Haringey redevelopment plans
Fight for an alternative to the misery of capitalism
Tragic death highlights Chatsworth ward closure risk
East London summit fails to address housing crisis
Interest at Nottingham Green festival
The Socialist 20 September 2017 |
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