Make education accessible to all

In light of the UCAS deadline, Bill Rammell, vice chancellor at the University of Bedfordshire and former higher education minister, comments on the upcoming challenges to higher education

We are seeing a higher education system which is facing challenges from all sides, with this government considering policies that will actively reverse previous government’s efforts to expand higher education.

The upcoming Augar Review and the rumoured plans to cut tuition fees to between £6,500 and £7,500 a year, with potentially higher fees for high-cost subjects, will only reduce the cost of university for high-earning graduates; while scrapping student loans for students with lower than three A level D grades will raise the barrier to social mobility and access to higher education.

We need to adopt policies that emphasise the principles that have guided the transformation of the higher education sector over the last decades, ensuring we have a higher education system that serves to benefit everyone in society, rather than an elite few.