We totally oppose the government’s recent suggestion to increase tuition fees to £7,000 a year. Such a move would have disastrous consequences.
Current tuition fee levels already deter those from less well off backgrounds from Higher Education. Any increase would make this situation even worse.
This failure is a direct result of government funding polices that leave students with record debt levels, which deter many from entering Higher Education.
The government’s claim that this policy of shifting more and more of the costs onto individual students and their families was necessary to dramatically increase the proportion of young people in Higher Education is now completely exposed by the government's decision to freeze student numbers and, at the same time, consider increasing fees.
In reality, the whole of our society benefits from a more skilled work-force. Higher education should, therefore, be funded as part of the government’s overall economic priorities, rather than making students and their families bear the burden.
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We, therefore, propose a united campaign of all students against any increase in tuition fees, in an alliance with the education unions and progressive opinion in wider society.
At the same time we will continue to argue for the abolition of fees and for a new free education funding system.
We reject proposals from some NUS leaders of replacing the current tuition fees system with a graduate tax, of up to 2.5%, payable for 20 years – which just replaces one form of debt with an even greater one. This strategy has failed to defend students and has contributed to a climate where ministers feel able to propose increasing fees to £7,000.
1. A united campaign by the whole of NUS including a national demonstration, regional and local action against any increase in tuition fees.
2. A free education campaign, calling for the abolition of fees and for a new government policy to continue to expand Higher Education funded by a progressive system of taxation in which those individuals and companies with the highest incomes contribute most.
3. To campaign for the government to change its spending priorities to increase Higher Education funding, to cut military spending, abandon ID cards and other programmes which contribute nothing to economic prosperity and social welfare.
The NUS National Executive should lead a national campaign against any increase in fees and reject all proposals to increase the financial burden on individual students.
Daf Adley, NUS LGBT Officer (
Bellavia Ribeiro-Addy, NUS Black Students’ Officer
Saima Yousaf, NUS International Students’ Officer
Naa-anyima Quaye, NUS National Executive Committee
Khaled AlMudallal, Secretary-Treasurer,
Ian Drummond – Student & Respect Party National Council
Junaid Ejaz, President,
Gabriel Hassan, General Secretary,
Jennifer Okojie, NUS Women’s Committee
Saima Parveen, Disabled Students’ Rep, NUS Black Students’ Committee
Anil Joshua Sachdeo, NUS Black Students’ Committee
Rebecca Sawbridge – NUS, Mature Students’ Committee