Universities group wants us to model system on Australia

Ireland“A year ago, it would have been unthinkable. But a student contribution to the cost of their third-level education now seems inevitable. If Minister Batt O’Keeffe pulls it off, it will be quite a political feat to bring an end to the free fees policy introduced by Niamh Breathnach in the mid-nineties. He has been softening up the ground for the past year by talking publicly about those high-earners who can afford to pay and about the need to help disadvantaged young people access higher education. The dire economic situation has helped him by making us expect the worst, as has Fine Gael with its proposals this week for a 30pc graduate contribution towards the cost of their education …” (more)

[Independent, 20 March]

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