The Department for Education yesterday, Thursday 3 August 2017, released their annual statistics on young people's participation in higher education, including their social background.
Analysis by the Centre for Policy Studies shows that rather than being put off by higher tuition fees, the number of students from disadvantaged backgrounds going to university has increased.
The report further highlights that Labour plans to abolish fees would be unfair and socially regressive, making less wealthy non-graduates subsidise higher earning graduates.
Daniel Mahoney, Head of Economic Research at the Centre for Policy Studies, responded to the figures:
“Statistics out today show that the participation rate of disadvantaged youngsters in Higher Education has increased by 4.8 percentage points since the £9,000 cap on fees was introduced. This is very welcome, and highlights how wrong Jeremy Corbyn was to suggest that fewer working class youngsters are attending university.
“It is also important to highlight that Corbyn’s proposal of abolishing tuition fees could, in fact, be a very regressive move. Graduates, on average, earn £9,500 more a year than non-graduates. By increasing fiscal burdens on the taxpayer, the policy would, in effect, be a subsidy from less wealthy non-graduates to wealthier graduates.
“Moreover, Scotland has no tuition fees and the proportion of disadvantaged youngsters going to University is far lower than in England.”
Read Daniel's full report here.