Labour say they will cut tuition fees from £9,000 to £6,000 if they win the general election in May.
This is part of a two-stage plan in which fees will eventually be replaced with a graduate tax.
Whilst both of these options are better than the current system, they are still not good enough. The proposals should be rejected in favour of free education for everyone funded by taxing the rich.
As long as there is a price tag on education, no matter how low, there will always be someone who cannot afford it. It reinforces the idea that universities are businesses. Students will request “value for money”, driving a wedge between lecturers’ struggles for fair pay and better conditions and the students who should be supporting them.
It isn’t just individual graduates who benefit from a university education, it is society as a whole. Therefore it should be paid for by those who are most able to pay – the rich.
The efforts from the student movement to keep tuition fees on the agenda for the duration of the coalition government is putting pressure on the Labour Party, but we need to continue pushing them.