View guides

Tuition Fees to Be Frozen at £9,250 Per Year

Posted by Richard Ward in

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

The Conservatives have announced plans to freeze tuition fees at £9,250 per year.

Theresa May admitted a change in the party's approach towards tuition fees in England came about after listening to voters.

In addition to the freezing of tuition fees, the fee repayment threshold will also increase. Going forward graduates will only start paying back loans once they're earning £25,000 or more, rather than the current threshold of £21,000.

It was also suggested the whole student finance system would be reviewed.

Mrs May said that when the government increased student fees it expected there would be "diversity in the system", with universities offering courses at differing price points rather than defaulting to the maximum amount.

As that hadn't happened, Mrs May said they needed to look at it again. She added: "By looking at it again we will be looking at the issues that people are raising, we will be looking at where the system has worked, we will be looking at the concerns that people have."

Because of this latest announcement, the planned £250 increase in tuition fees for 2018-19 will not go ahead and fees will remain at the current maximum of £9,250 per year.

Chief executive of Universities UK, Alistair Jarvis, said he wanted the government to go further by reinstating maintenance grants for the poorest students and reducing interest rates for low and medium earners.

Mr Jarvis said: "We also need to do more to reverse the worrying decline in the numbers of part time and mature students."

Labour branded the plan as "desperate", although some may argue the approach to tuition fees is more realistic than the idea of scrapping fees altogether.