Raising tuition fees – bad for democracy and meritocracy

You would expect this survey by the NUS to report that adults are against the increase in tuition fees, but the findings are back up by the results of two other surveys I found –

According to this online survey of a representative sample of 2,001 British adults, 70 per cent of respondents oppose the increase in the level of fees which Universities can charge students to take their courses. Only 23 per cent of Britons support the change.

Seven-in-ten respondents (71%) think the maximum cap of £9,000 per year is too high, and 57 per cent believe that the change in tuition fees will ultimately discourage students from economically poorer backgrounds from attending University.

According to this Ipsos MORI survey published by the Sutton Trust eight in ten (80%) of the pupils aged 11-16 at schools in England and Wales said they were either ‘very likely’ (39%) or ‘fairly likely’ (41%) to go into higher education.

The 2,700 survey respondents were asked for the first time this year to rate their likelihood of attending university if tuition fees were raised. More than two-thirds (68%) said they would still be likely to go on to higher education if fees were increased to £5,000. But only 45% would be likely to continue to university if fees were raised to £7,000 – and this percentage falls to 26% with a major hike up to £10,000.

So all in all Thursday was a bleak day for democracy – especially keeping in mind that the only party that was orginally for raising tuiution fees so drastically was the Conservative Party – and they only got one third of the popular vote in the last election.

No wonder people are angry!

Oh I’ll blog on the meritocracy thing later – lots of evidence to pull together on that little number!

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