Richard Adams cites the Sutton Trust’s Fairer Fees report in an article on maintenance grants for the Guardian.
Pressure is growing on the government to reverse its scrapping of maintenance grants in England, after a second influential parliamentary committee called for financial support for disadvantaged students to be reinstated.
The call by the House of Commons’ education select committee will add to the ongoing debate on high levels of student debt and tuition fees in England, as rumours swirl over a possible cut in undergraduate fees to £6,500 being considered by a panel set up by Theresa May.
Earlier research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies found that the increase in tuition fees and the subsequent scrapping of maintenance grants led to students from the poorest backgrounds graduating with debts of more than £57,000.
The education committee highlighted experts labelling the decision to scrap grants as “disastrous”, while the Sutton Trust – which campaigns to widen access to education – has repeatedly called for maintenance grants to be reinstated to cut student debt by 75% for students from poorer backgrounds.
The BBC has reported that vice-chancellors fear the review is considering a cut in tuition fees to £6,500, with higher fees for more expensive courses. Universities are pushing back against the possibility, saying that tuition fee cuts would only benefit the most well-off students and harm social mobility.