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Tuition fees – to cut or not to cut

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Despite anecdotal evidence that higher tuition fees act as a deterrent to university applications and the fact that a review commissioned by the Prime Minister is expected to recommend major cuts, Education Secretary Damian Hinds has said there is no evidence higher tuition fees have deterred young people in England from applying to university.

Indeed Mr Hinds went further and stated that there had actually been an increase in applications from students from lower income families.

In rejecting the claim that higher tuition fees means less applications to university, he did recognise that five times as many students from London go to selective universities, compared to their counterparts from the North East and also that white working class applicants need as much support as other disadvantaged groups.

This is nonetheless a surprising statistic, as tuition fees have trebled since the 2012.

Many students are leaving University with debts in excess of £50,000 and this is one of the reasons why the Government’s review chaired by Philip Augar is expected to suggest cutting tuition fees.  It also comes on the back of Labour’s promise that they would scrap tuition fees altogether.