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    Dear David Willetts.

    A constant excuse for shifting the burden of HE funding from the Government to students is along the lines of "we don't have the money because of the deficit".

    How does this add up when the Government won't gain a penny from the tuition fee increases until the average graduate starting in 2012 has paid back over what they would have paid in the old system (just over £3,200pa excluding maintenance)?

    Surely it will take well over a decade (if not longer) before the Government sees any return on the proposed increases, thus making it nothing to do with our present deficit problems?
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    I really hope we get a real answer for this question. Doubt it though
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    But the point is, they WILL see a return eventually. I mean, the only alternative to what you're saying would be to make everyone pay upfront- which would NOT be fair, and would never, ever happen.
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    (Original post by Gemma :)!)
    But the point is, they WILL see a return eventually. I mean, the only alternative to what you're saying would be to make everyone pay upfront- which would NOT be fair, and would never, ever happen.
    I never questioned that the Government will see a return eventually. I just asked how it helps our current deficit problem, which is what many representatives of the Government (particularly Lib Dems from what I've noticed) have been implying.
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    (Original post by Gemma :)!)
    But the point is, they WILL see a return eventually. I mean, the only alternative to what you're saying would be to make everyone pay upfront- which would NOT be fair, and would never, ever happen.
    But the point is that by the time there are returns, the current economic situation may very well have been solved, so the reason doesn't make sense
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    (Original post by Silly Goose)
    I never questioned that the Government will see a return eventually. I just asked how it helps our current deficit problem, which is what many representatives of the Government (particularly Lib Dems from what I've noticed) have been implying.
    The "current deficit problem" is a long term issue, not something that will be solved overnight by a few funding changes.
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    (Original post by Gemma :)!)
    The "current deficit problem" is a long term issue, not something that will be solved overnight by a few funding changes.
    I also never said the problem would be solved over night, hence: "well over a decade (if not even longer)".
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    At the moment we pay out teaching grant unconditionally. In future we lend students the money and collect it back when they earn more than £21k. We reckon we will get back about £70 for every £100 we lend. Our system of public accounting is so sophisticated that it picks this up as a saving compared with the old grant - and quite rightly because there is a real difference.
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    (Original post by David Willetts)
    At the moment we pay out teaching grant unconditionally. In future we lend students the money and collect it back when they earn more than £21k. We reckon we will get back about £70 for every £100 we lend. Our system of public accounting is so sophisticated that it picks this up as a saving compared with the old grant - and quite rightly because there is a real difference.
    How much of a saving?
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    So the answer is that it wont lower the deficit till around a decade later?
    Surely the point of efficiency savings is that they have a short to medium term effect? There's no point in pruning the HE budget with an axe and therefore risking recovery in skilled sectors just for the hell of it.
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    (Original post by David Willetts)
    At the moment we pay out teaching grant unconditionally. In future we lend students the money and collect it back when they earn more than £21k. We reckon we will get back about £70 for every £100 we lend. Our system of public accounting is so sophisticated that it picks this up as a saving compared with the old grant - and quite rightly because there is a real difference.
    I thank you for responding to my question, but I'm not entirely sure that I understand the last part of your response.
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    (Original post by Silly Goose)
    I also never said the problem would be solved over night, hence: "well over a decade (if not even longer)".
    Well then surely you can see exactly how the fee increase helps! You've answered your own question there.
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    (Original post by David Willetts)
    At the moment we pay out teaching grant unconditionally. In future we lend students the money and collect it back when they earn more than £21k. We reckon we will get back about £70 for every £100 we lend. Our system of public accounting is so sophisticated that it picks this up as a saving compared with the old grant - and quite rightly because there is a real difference.
    What a load of nonsense.

    Strikes me as another way of saying that the money given out is declared as lending rather than expenditure and so makes the books LOOK more evenly balanced.

    There is in fact no saving unless you cut student numbers - and rest assured, they will be cut!
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    ITT: Those who can't comprehend the idea of a government governing based on anything other than short-term popularity.

    Which, given that you've mostly lived through a Labour government, could be forgiven I suppose.
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    I'm not sure what sort of miracle answer I was expecting. It's bizarre that this aspect of the policy rhetoric hasn't come under more scrutiny. Especially since (I think?) the Coalition have pledged to wipe out the vast majority of the deficit by 2016, which is still a long time away from seeing even the most minute increase in returns on tuition fees, considering that the rate at which it's paid back is still the same.
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    (Original post by TShadow383)
    ITT: Those who can't comprehend the idea of a government governing based on anything other than short-term popularity.

    Which, given that you've mostly lived through a Labour government, could be forgiven I suppose.
    The Conservatives (nearly) won a general election based on their short term savings policies did they not.
 
 
 
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