University Tuition Fees Should Not be Paid by the State.

When university fees in Britain were tripled from the value of £3000 to £9000 in 2010, I was, like so many other students, shocked. University education is a right for all in Britain and abroad, so hiking the fee bracket up to £9000 made it less accessible to those less well off and consequently threatened to make university education exclusive to those who could afford it, for the loans and grants offered were not high enough to see someone through a university degree.

However, university education should not be free. Schooling in Britain is free, however the standard and availability of good schools is dropping. Rather than pouring money into making university education free for all, the money should be redirected into improving the current schools and tackling the huge problem of school place deficit.

An article by the BBC in January 2015 suggested that by 2023, there will be a deficit of 880,000 school places in England alone. The continued pressure on schools, it continues, to provide these school places could ‘push them to breaking point’. Statistics by the Labour party also suggest that 1 in 5 schools are already above capacity.

The schools are suffering, and at a time when benefits are being cut and welfare is being reduced, the schools need governmental support. Instead, it is being suggested that all university fees should get paid by the state, regardless of the financial position of the person attending that higher education institution.
In schooling terms, it is the most vulnerable who are suffering, for the more well-off children can get into private schools, more of which are always being established across the country. However, the argument put forward for free university education is one which would extend to all students, regardless of their financial upbringing. Instead of all students getting free education to university, there should be a reduced rate of university fee for all of £6,000 per annum, but with a heightened availability and number of scholarships and bursaries made available. The rest of the money would then be spent on the improvement and expansion of state schooling, from which 16 per cent of 15 year olds are left “functionally illiterate”, according to an article in The Telegraph.

It is not fair for all students to have access to free university education. Especially when school does not adequately offer all students the opportunities they deserve, at an early age when it most matters. The intellectual potential of a student is most hindered at an early age, which severely limits the range of opportunities they will have in the future.

Moreover some families can afford to pay the university fees up front. To put all fees on the government’s shoulders, when some families can legitimately pay upfront is ludicrous, especially as the availability of private schools means the more well-off are immune to the lower standards of some primary and secondary schools.

There is also an overwhelming understress on the importance of having councilors for specific schools. Mental health is not treated as it should be at school, meaning that there is not the support available for students when it is required. A survey conducted by The Key, which asks headteachers about their views on state education, earlier this month revealed that 70 per cent of the primary school headteachers interviewed thought mental health treatment in schools was poor. Mental health consultation in schools is an area severely neglected and in need of funding.


Government money can be better spent than paying for all university fees across the UK. For the standards of teaching and welfare in various primary and secondary schools are not where they should be. The number of school children is forever increasing, meaning the resources currently available to schools will become more and more stretched over time. 

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By: Josh Stein

University Tuition Fees Should Not be Paid by the State. University Tuition Fees Should Not be Paid by the State. Reviewed by Unknown on 18:57 Rating: 5

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