The British Universities are going through the biggest shake-up of higher education funding in half a century. There is going to be a quantum jump in the cost of the University education. The middle class is going to be the worst affected by the proposed hikes as they will bear the brunt of drastic cuts to university budgets through a triple whammy of higher tuition fees, costlier student loans and restricted access to grants.
The fees are capped at £3,290 a year at present. The student loans to cover these charges and living costs attract very low interest rates at the moment. But fees are set to rise to take the cost of a three-year degree to £30,000 from the 2012 session. The interest rate on student loans are also set to go up adding a substantial £20,000 in terms of interest costs. With the cost of living going up the students would need another £30,000 to go through an University education.
A rough calculation will tell you that the repayment plan of £80,000 could see tens of thousands continuing to make repayments well into their 40s. These proposals are sure to ignite a fierce debate in the government and the coalition partners. The purpose of these proposed hikes is to prevent the poorest youngsters being deterred from higher education.