Student finance: University challenge

UK“The greatest domestic rebellion of Tony Blair’s leadership came over his university top-up fee plan. Labour MPs thought it would throttle the hopes of poor youngsters, and they came close to destroying their boss – in the end, however, he was saved by ‘a nod and a wink’. The rebels’ leader, Nick Brown, used the phrase to relay a signal from his close friend and namesake, the then chancellor, that he would keep a lid on the fees. Five years on, one Brown is prime minister, the other one is his chief whip and top-up fees are up for review. This time, the nods and winks are coming from Peter Mandelson – and his words this week about facing up to the costs of education are being read as a sure sign that a steep rise in fees is on the way …” (more)

[Editorial, Guardian, 29 July]

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