As the Labour Party meets for its annual conference in Brighton, David Morris sets out the key unanswered questions that the party must now address ahead of any election.
In the run up to Labour’s expected announcement that they will cut fees from £9,000 to £6,000, Graeme Wise looks at the method proposed to pay for it – the controversial cut in pensioner tax relief – and finds a progressive solution that has the added benefit of rolling back the marketisation of the sector and reducing some of the risks associated with the student loans system.
Shadow Universities, Skills & Science Minister Liam Byrne has given a far-ranging interview to The House Magazine this week. It includes some interesting clues to where Labour is on HE fees – a question on the lips of much of the sector. Perhaps more intriguingly, this interview and other briefings are being used as evidence elsewhere for Labour being at war at the top.
Labour’s 2015 position on higher education policy – of all the three main political parties – is still probably the hardest to predict. But this is not necessarily because of the affordability of a £6k or even a £5k fee (the IPPR costed it at nearly £2billion up front – even more for a graduate tax – an awful lot to spend in a cash constrained election). Andy Westwood continues his series marking party conference season and takes a look at the state of Labour’s HE policy.