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Why cutting tuition fees bizarrely risks hurting not helping most students watch

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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    That's one justification for it. But then it's rather unfair to criticise people for not paying back what they borrowed when they are infact being asked to pay back several times the amount that they borrowed.
    I'm not aware of many people criticising those who don't fully repay the loan? If those who earn the most don't subsidise those who earn the least then measures would have to be taken to ensure that everyone repays their loan - and that's going to be REALLY bad news for those on low incomes. Just look at the state of things in America.
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    (Original post by CurlyBen)
    I'm not aware of many people criticising those who don't fully repay the loan? If those who earn the most don't subsidise those who earn the least then measures would have to be taken to ensure that everyone repays their loan - and that's going to be REALLY bad news for those on low incomes. Just look at the state of things in America.
    We may as well have a graduate tax then.

    The problem is that their are private interests who are making money out of the high interest rates which isn't going back into the university system. Namely the Student Loans Company.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    We may as well have a graduate tax then.

    The problem is that their are private interests who are making money out of the high interest rates which isn't going back into the university system. Namely the Student Loans Company.
    I'm not necessarily opposed to the idea of a graduate tax. However it's simply wrong to say that none of the money from high interest rates will go into the university system - it makes up the shortfall from those who don't pay back what was given to the universities on their behalf. Obviously the SLC make money as well, but that is essential to a private company.
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    (Original post by CurlyBen)
    I'm not necessarily opposed to the idea of a graduate tax. However it's simply wrong to say that none of the money from high interest rates will go into the university system - it makes up the shortfall from those who don't pay back what was given to the universities on their behalf. Obviously the SLC make money as well, but that is essential to a private company.
    I'm not saying none of the money goes into the system. All of the money should go into the system.

    The Student Loans should not be privatised and there should not be private interests making money off the system. In essence we are asking graduates to pay high interest rates which at least partially fund private interests. That's wrong.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    So starting salary of £22k to £28k in London.

    The average teacher's starting salary isn't even going to be enough to trigger the threshold for paying the loan back, which is £25k.

    Even earning 60k, you are only paying back just over £3,000 a year.

    The vast majority of teachers are never going to earn enough to pay the fees back plus interest. That doesn't mean they aren't ambitious or are lazy. That's the nature of their profession.

    Especially when you consider the fact that a great deal of them are subject to a public sector pay freeze.
    A starting salary of £28,660 in London, to be precise. Which is what I said, give or take a few quid?

    As for teachers not being lazy or unambitious, I certainly don't accuse them of the former. It is a highly demanding profession. And of great worth to society.

    But its low social status (amongst graduates) surely means isn't a career for a particularly ambitious person, or one who seeks a reasonable financial reward for their labour.

    It is a relatively low status profession because it is poorly paid, in fact.

    Our society equates status with wealth whether we like it or not. It may be shallow and wrong, but it is unlikely to change.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    I would be in agreement if the cost people were having to pay back was reflective of what they borrowed, i.e £27k plus inflation. But people will end up paying about 3 times that at least back if they do manage to pay it off.
    Well you've had the use of the money in the meanwhile. That is worth something. That is what interest payments are for.

    Personally, I'd be willing to compromise on this point. I'd take down the overall amount repayable by students, funding the surplus with tax money, if the repayment terms could be strengthened such that most people, or at least many more people, pay off their debts.

    Such a move could be made without any net cost to the treasury, since so little is presently recouped of the headline debt figures anyway.

    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    The vast majority of teachers are never going to earn enough to pay the fees back plus interest. That doesn't mean they aren't ambitious or are lazy. That's the nature of their profession.
    Maybe, but that's the profession they have chosen.

    You shouldn't get to choose not to pay your debts.

    I get that we shouldn't be pushing too hard to get money from people who graduate and flit between unemployment and minimum wage work, but teachers are in a real career with real pay. They can afford to pay back much more than they do.
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    (Original post by TimmonaPortella)
    Well you've had the use of the money in the meanwhile. That is worth something. That is what interest payments are for.

    Personally, I'd be willing to compromise on this point. I'd take down the overall amount repayable by students, funding the surplus with tax money, if the repayment terms could be strengthened such that most people, or at least many more people, pay off their debts.

    Such a move could be made without any net cost to the treasury, since so little is presently recouped of the headline debt figures anyway.

    I wouldn't be opposed to people having to pay back more and reducing the total amount that they have to pay.

    The problem is that the current system does exactly what you don't want it it to do. The high interest rates means people who earn a lot will be paying the amount they borrowed a number of times over while people who earn less may not even pay back their fees at all.

    My argument was that if we're going to have the system like this, then we may as well make it into a proper graduate tax system, rather than the de facto one it is at the moment.

    There's also the argument about whether the state should be acting like a corporate lender with the high interest rates with regards to its citizens but I guess that's a different debate altogether.


    Maybe, but that's the profession they have chosen.

    You shouldn't get to choose not to pay your debts.

    I get that we shouldn't be pushing too hard to get money from people who graduate and flit between unemployment and minimum wage work, but teachers are in a real career with real pay. They can afford to pay back much more than they do.
    I was making the point that the nature of their profession means that under the current system the vast majority of teachers won't pay their debts off. It was in response to another poster describing them as lazy or entitled for not paying the whole thing back.

    There's also the aspect that we very much need teachers, as a society in a way that isn't quite as important for other professions and the fact that pay tends to not be so high means it may be worth looking at other incentives for people to enter the profession.
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    (Original post by generallee)
    A starting salary of £28,660 in London, to be precise. Which is what I said, give or take a few quid?

    As for teachers not being lazy or unambitious, I certainly don't accuse them of the former. It is a highly demanding profession. And of great worth to society.

    But its low social status (amongst graduates) surely means isn't a career for a particularly ambitious person, or one who seeks a reasonable financial reward for their labour.

    It is a relatively low status profession because it is poorly paid, in fact.

    Our society equates status with wealth whether we like it or not. It may be shallow and wrong, but it is unlikely to change.
    £28,660 is the maximum in London. Graduate schemes like Teach First don't pay that. You can't realistically take the maximum salary in the country's most expensive city and make out like it's representative of the profession.

    It is of great worth to society and society very much needs talented teachers to enter the profession. How else do we convince people who would do law (of which we have an abundance of professionals) to do teaching? Also teaching being a highly public sector role by nature means that their salaries are dependant on what the government wants to pay them, rather than a reflection on their actual worth.

    We can't just have a country of lawyers, surgeons and investment bankers.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    I wouldn't be opposed to people having to pay back more and reducing the total amount that they have to pay.

    The problem is that the current system does exactly what you don't want it it to do. The high interest rates means people who earn a lot will be paying the amount they borrowed a number of times over while people who earn less may not even pay back their fees at all.

    My argument was that if we're going to have the system like this, then we may as well make it into a proper graduate tax system, rather than the de facto one it is at the moment.

    There's also the argument about whether the state should be acting like a corporate lender with the high interest rates with regards to its citizens but I guess that's a different debate altogether.
    You're right about the problem, as far as I'm concerned.

    I don't agree that we might as well make it a straight graduate tax system. With all my issues with the present system, there is, at least, a limit to the amount you can pay. If you go out and get an excellent job with high pay, you can actually clear your debt. Under a graduate tax, the amount you can pay back is boundless.

    I don't think anyone should be liable to pay an unlimited amount back for the finite service of education for the duration of a degree course. I also think that, if this were the case, a lot of top earning graduates would simply leave. The highest earning graduates are also the most globally mobile.

    There needs to be some interest, because there is a cost to the government not having the money for the period in which the student has it. The government has to borrow that money, with interest payments attached, in the first place. There is also obviously a credit risk, but I'd accept that the taxpayer should shoulder some of that particular burden. Overall the interest rate should probably be lower.

    I was making the point that the nature of their profession means that under the current system the vast majority of teachers won't pay their debts off. It was in response to another poster describing them as lazy or entitled for not paying the whole thing back.

    There's also the aspect that we very much need teachers, as a society in a way that isn't quite as important for other professions and the fact that pay tends to not be so high means it may be worth looking at other incentives for people to enter the profession.
    My only real point here is that the threshold for repayment should be lower, so that more people in careers such as teaching actually pay off their debt.

    If you want specific incentives for people to become teachers I'm not necessarily opposed to that, but in general the threshold should be lower.
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    (Original post by TimmonaPortella)
    You're right about the problem, as far as I'm concerned.

    I don't agree that we might as well make it a straight graduate tax system. With all my issues with the present system, there is, at least, a limit to the amount you can pay. If you go out and get an excellent job with high pay, you can actually clear your debt. Under a graduate tax, the amount you can pay back is boundless.

    I don't think anyone should be liable to pay an unlimited amount back for the finite service of education for the duration of a degree course. I also think that, if this were the case, a lot of top earning graduates would simply leave. The highest earning graduates are also the most globally mobile.

    There needs to be some interest, because there is a cost to the government not having the money for the period in which the student has it. The government has to borrow that money, with interest payments attached, in the first place. There is also obviously a credit risk, but I'd accept that the taxpayer should shoulder some of that particular burden. Overall the interest rate should probably be lower.



    My only real point here is that the threshold for repayment should be lower, so that more people in careers such as teaching actually pay off their debt.

    If you want specific incentives for people to become teachers I'm not necessarily opposed to that, but in general the threshold should be lower.
    Fair enough, I don't disagree with any of that really.

    Perhaps the way forward would be for different courses to be charged differently as a reflection of the earning and career potential of a course rather than the current situation which means Law at Oxbridge costs the same as sociology at a metropolitan.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    £28,660 is the maximum in London. Graduate schemes like Teach First don't pay that. You can't realistically take the maximum salary in the country's most expensive city and make out like it's representative of the profession.

    It is of great worth to society and society very much needs talented teachers to enter the profession. How else do we convince people who would do law (of which we have an abundance of professionals) to do teaching? Also teaching being a highly public sector role by nature means that their salaries are dependant on what the government wants to pay them, rather than a reflection on their actual worth.

    We can't just have a country of lawyers, surgeons and investment bankers.
    £28,660 is what every newly qualified teacher gets in inner London. Sigh.

    I am all for teaching being made more attractive as a profession, but it is a hard ask frankly. First, it is never going to pay big bucks, that is the reality. (Besides, the argument has always been teachers get long holidays in compensation, which has some merit).

    Second it is such a $hit job most of the time. They get almost zero respect from parents, let alone kids.

    I don't know where you were educated, maybe some fancy schmancy independent or grammar school. Who knows. A different world if so. But if you went to a school like mine, like most in the country, a bog standard comprehensive you will be well aware of just how appalling the working conditions for teachers are. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

    (Unless you are a very very strong character indeed. Such as maybe five/ten per cent of the profession are. Some personality types can control all but the very worst classes, and instil discipline, but whether they enjoy it is a another matter).
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    (Original post by generallee)
    I am a little confused. I thought you said you would never repay your debt, now you are claiming it has been paid off, "done and dusted"??
    I went to uni in 1995. I was the last year to get a full maintenance grant so in 96 the first loans came through. You could borrow £1200! That paid for my climbing gear, stereo stacking system and a few nice trips. When I graduated in 2000 I owed around £5000 which was paid off in full.

    I then went to uni last year for a PGCE and maxed out leaving after a year with debts of £20k. My current salary is £22,600. After 5 years it will be just shy of £30k and I can potentially top out around £37k. At that rate there is no way I will pay it back.
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    (Original post by ByEeek)
    I went to uni in 1995. I was the last year to get a full maintenance grant so in 96 the first loans came through. You could borrow £1200! That paid for my climbing gear, stereo stacking system and a few nice trips. When I graduated in 2000 I owed around £5000 which was paid off in full.

    I then went to uni last year for a PGCE and maxed out leaving after a year with debts of £20k. My current salary is £22,600. After 5 years it will be just shy of £30k and I can potentially top out around £37k. At that rate there is no way I will pay it back.
    Gotcha.

    I take back what I said earlier i the thread. There is no way you could be expected to pay back a loan entering the profession twenty years late.

    Were there many on your PGCE course of your age?
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    (Original post by generallee)
    £28,660 is what every newly qualified teacher gets in inner London. Sigh.

    I am all for teaching being made more attractive as a profession, but it is a hard ask frankly. First, it is never going to pay big bucks, that is the reality. (Besides, the argument has always been teachers get long holidays in compensation, which has some merit).

    Second it is such a $hit job most of the time. They get almost zero respect from parents, let alone kids.

    I don't know where you were educated, maybe some fancy schmancy independent or grammar school. Who knows. A different world if so. But if you went to a school like mine, like most in the country, a bog standard comprehensive you will be well aware of just how appalling the working conditions for teachers are. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

    (Unless you are a very very strong character indeed. Such as maybe five/ten per cent of the profession are. Some personality types can control all but the very worst classes, and instil discipline, but whether they enjoy it is a another matter).

    You're correct in that it's a very difficult job and that teachers are often underpaid and underappreciated.

    But nonetheless, whatever your political views, the vast majority of people recognise that it's vital for our country to have good teachers.

    Whether that's by upping their salaries or even reducing tuition fees for those who stay in the teaching profession a number of years, is up for debate.

    But if we don't make the profession more enticing for ambitious graduates, then our brightest will continue to shun teaching.
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    (Original post by generallee)
    Gotcha.

    I take back what I said earlier i the thread. There is no way you could be expected to pay back a loan entering the profession twenty years late.

    Were there many on your PGCE course of your age?
    I'm not 20 years late. And I will be in the same position as my young graduate mates who also won't pay off their loans. We only have 30 years. And yes, there were a number of mature students.
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    (Original post by ax12)
    That’s literally the point that the article is making
    Actually, to us, to say it would "benefit" us is a bit of an exaggeration. Our parents can pay it in full (and in my case, multiple degrees, and international fees), so you can imagine how little things like that would mean to my family (assuming they'd be paying home fees, of course).

    It would benefit the middle class the most.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    You're correct in that it's a very difficult job and that teachers are often underpaid and underappreciated.

    But nonetheless, whatever your political views, the vast majority of people recognise that it's vital for our country to have good teachers.

    Whether that's by upping their salaries or even reducing tuition fees for those who stay in the teaching profession a number of years, is up for debate.

    But if we don't make the profession more enticing for ambitious graduates, then our brightest will continue to shun teaching.
    In terms of attracting quality candidates, upping the salary is definitely a lot more effective.

    1. People who study those qualifications might stay only for the absolute minimum number of years, while the longer you make them stay, the less attractive the fees reduction will seem, so that's a catch-22.

    2. Upping the salary would mean attracting the best people not just from people who went for a qualification in education, but from all disciplines; it also means attracting the best people from the entire world, not just domestically.

    3. Upping the salary would most likely directly raise respect for teachers (like how people respect bankers and lawyers), something a reduction in the qualifications will not do.

    4. It's a lot more attractive - no minimum years commitment, potentially making more money every year vs saving money for a very limited amount of time.
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    (Original post by DeBruyne18)
    Fair enough, I don't disagree with any of that really.

    Perhaps the way forward would be for different courses to be charged differently as a reflection of the earning and career potential of a course rather than the current situation which means Law at Oxbridge costs the same as sociology at a metropolitan.
    Which is why the caps should be lifted. Let the market decides their worth. If you look at international fees, you can see Oxbridge charging multiple times more than the lower-tier universities, and you can see different courses charging many different monies.

    This means:
    1. the degrees are worth something, and people are willing to pay for them;
    2. it'd be fair for the prices to reflect their perceived worth from the market;
    3. universities would no longer need to subsidize those degrees or create cheap courses to cover the costs for most expensive degrees.

    If you differentiate the fees, you're always going to get people complaining about academic freedom or the government looking down upon certain disciplines or universities complaining about the lack of funding. The people will never be satisfied with it either - you can make all undergraduate education free, and they could still complain about postgraduate fees.

    Also, keep in mind the fees aren't going to rise up to what they are for internationals, because universities would no longer need to overcharge to recover costs lost by having home undergraduate students, and with more supply, there will not be sufficient demand to support sky-high prices.
 
 
 
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