11 Dec 2010

The cost of education...

How depressing. When I was a university student (1974-77), I got a grant that meant that I was almost self sufficient (at least during term time) - my mum and dad only had to contribute something like £50 a term. When my elder son Jonathan went to study a York university in the UK (2002-2005), fees were around £1000 a year. For our second son Kieran, who was at Warwick from  2006 to 2009, fees had gone up to £3000. Now, it has been decided that future students are going to have to pay up to £9000 a year in fees to be able to go to university. What has gone wrong?

Sorry to be boring, but I really believe that the problem lies in the fact that we are now all at the mercy of the financial markets. Governments are forced to accept massive cuts in public funding for all that is really important - education, research, the arts, social services - because they all fear that if they don't, they will be the next on the list of countries that are the targets for the speculators. The solution? A 1% Financial Transaction Tax.... It would provide enough revenue to pay off each countries debts, as well as allowing everyone to have a decent pension and an equal chance of higher education.


  1. Surely those who benefit directly from a university education should pay more for it than those who don't go to university but pay taxes for other people's privileges?

    Maybe the Guardian will take this up as an idea...

  2. I believe that the country's best students should be able to study at university not because they will necessarilly earn lots of money later on. If students only study subjects that are guaranteed to provide enough money to repay the fees, universities will end up being extremely tedious places.

    And as a way of investing for the countries future, there can surely be few better investments than giving the best students an excellent education. The entire society benefits by having highly trained and educated graduates. So why should only the student have to pay the costs?