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General Chat Thread, raising top-up fees, what say thee ? in General; It's being widely reported today, they've noticed that topup fees have been so universally popular that they'd like to push ...
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    torledo's Avatar
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    raising top-up fees, what say thee ?

    It's being widely reported today, they've noticed that topup fees have been so universally popular that they'd like to push their luck just a bit more by increasing the cap.....hopefully this might reignite the debate as to why we even have university fees in the first place.

    you'd probably guess what my views are, they burden the current uni attending generation with tens of thousands in debts, but more importantly the repayment method penalises those who earn above a certain threshold [sound familiar ?? tax credits anyone !!??!]

    it's a classic nulabour class snobbery, through schemes tax credits, university fees etc. they want to shift the tax/repayment burden onto those who choose to better themselves by progressing in their role/org. there's little incentive for a young person or family to take on a 25k a year job if you'll end up having a huge maginal tax burden in the form of deductions for union fees, pension scheme, basic rate income tax, NI contributions, council tax, rent to pay someone elses mortgage....and on top of that an interest accruing topup fee monthly repayment. why is this country getting progressively worse for successive generations ? why are things that were once taken for granted now either scarce or costly ? why is there such generational theft, and why are politicians who received a free education and affordable housing now denying those things to successive generations ?

    is this the definiton of a ponzi ?

    what i'd like to see is a retrospective university fee charge, write a letter to all alumni of all universities and inform them that we'll be taking back everyone's grants!!! [yes young 'uns not so long ago you'd have been paid to go to uni!!! fancy that] and charging for x number of years of the high class university tuition they received in the form of deductions from they're wage packet. If voluntarily philanthropy won't be enough to cover costs, this might work.
    Last edited by torledo; 17th March 2009 at 08:50 AM.

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    apoth0r's Avatar
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    Everyone has a fair chance of going to university now!!!!!!!
    oh wait..... if you can afford it.

    Even better if you're on benefits! Always wondered what the beauty of being brought up in a council estate would have been like, ahhh the opportunity.....

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    I was bought up in a council estate, and only myself and one other person in my area went to university. The whole place goes down hill with parents who couldnt care. As for most of the people on the estate, MANY of them do want to better themselves (well in my area), but its a case that they are unable to afford it.

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    AyatollahPies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post

    is this the definition of ponzi ?
    Not quite. :-)

    "A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to investors from their own money or money paid by subsequent investors rather than from any actual profit earned." - Wikipedia

    I know where you're coming from though.

    Not so sure what you mean by this "the repayment method penalises those who earn above a certain threshold"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ayatollah Pies View Post
    Not so sure what you mean by this "the repayment method penalises those who earn above a certain threshold"
    You don't have to repay any of your student loan unless you earn more than a certain amount.

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    apoth0r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    I was bought up in a council estate, and only myself and one other person in my area went to university. The whole place goes down hill with parents who couldnt care. As for most of the people on the estate, MANY of them do want to better themselves (well in my area), but its a case that they are unable to afford it.
    We're how many years on from that?
    Opportunities have increased for people living under council estates, your experiences aren't really relevant anymore

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    AngryTechnician's Avatar
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    Not suite sure with your suggestion that it seems like a Ponzi scheme, and the suggestion that class snobbery is something particular to Labour is patently ridiculous - that's just politicians in general the way I see it, and will be no different when the Conservatives inevitably get in at the next election.

    I graduated before "top-up fees" but during the years when there was a fee of up to just over £1000. I was lucky enough to have this waived as my family income was so low, but I had to take out the maximum student loan for 4 years and fully expect to still be paying it back in 10 years' time.

    As I understand it, even though I would have benefited from the maintenance grant if the current system was in place, it would have been negated by the higher fees I would have to pay back afterwards (which are not waived for anyone unless I am mistaken), so I would be in no different a situation than I am now.

    In short, as someone at the low-income end of the scale, I would be no better off now than under the system I went through on, so the suggestion it helps poorer families seem bogus to me. Those with higher family incomes are clearly worse off under top-up fees. I don't see how any student is better off under this arrangement.

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    AngryTechnician's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apoth0r View Post
    Opportunities have increased for people living under council estates, your experiences aren't really relevant anymore
    As someone who is active in the community in an area with a lot of social housing, I can't say I agree with that assessment. In a lot of areas social deprivation is still very high.

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    Mounting anger that Scottish MPs, most of whom are Labour, are still able to vote on laws affecting England’s education and health policies when English

    MPs now have no say on those issues north of the border.

    Five years ago, the Government was able to force through controversial university tuition fees plans only after more than 40 Scottish Labour MPs backed it – even though the proposals did not affect their constituents.


    Cameron: I would ban Scottish MPs from voting on English-only issues | Mail Online

    BBC NEWS | Education | Universities push for higher fees

    Scottish students get their fees wavered whilst the rest of the U.K. pays more and more. This is fudamentally wrong here!! Ill be writing to my local MP. If for instance I decide to a masters at some point or someone else in my family is struck by more fees we will suffer. Its all wrong. The rest of the U.K. should be blanketed with the same fees, fair for all, same for all!!

    Ive worked in many different jobs since I was 13 and still struggled to pay fees of 1800 or so I think it was a year and maintain an ok standard of living whilst also living at home and studying + holding down a part time job. God knows what its like for those living away and not holding down a job or w/e.. Also people from perhaps lower income families! - I don't see why they couldn't afford it. I paid for everything myself.
    Last edited by Jiser; 17th March 2009 at 09:01 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryTechnician View Post
    In short, as someone at the low-income end of the scale, I would be no better off now than under the system I went through on, so the suggestion it helps poorer families seem bogus to me. Those with higher family incomes are clearly worse off under top-up fees. I don't see how any student is better off under this arrangement.
    Levelling the playing field is easier when you just try to drag it all down to the same level, rather than build up the lower areas.

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    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryTechnician View Post
    Not suite sure with your suggestion that it seems like a Ponzi scheme, and the suggestion that class snobbery is something particular to Labour is patently ridiculous - that's just politicians in general the way I see it, and will be no different when the Conservatives inevitably get in at the next election.

    I graduated before "top-up fees" but during the years when there was a fee of up to just over £1000. I was lucky enough to have this waived as my family income was so low, but I had to take out the maximum student loan for 4 years and fully expect to still be paying it back in 10 years' time.

    As I understand it, even though I would have benefited from the maintenance grant if the current system was in place, it would have been negated by the higher fees I would have to pay back afterwards (which are not waived for anyone unless I am mistaken), so I would be in no different a situation than I am now.

    In short, as someone at the low-income end of the scale, I would be no better off now than under the system I went through on, so the suggestion it helps poorer families seem bogus to me. Those with higher family incomes are clearly worse off under top-up fees. I don't see how any student is better off under this arrangement.

    you clearly have been subsidised as someone on 'low income' as your top-up fees were waived.

    or do you live in cloud cuckoo land where someone, somewhere down the line, doesn't end up paying or making up the shortfall to give you a free education. Why should a higher education be means tested in such way ? why penalise those becuase they earn above a certain threshold. it's class snobbery but not in the way you imagine.

    i didn't say class snobbery was peculiar to nulabour, at one point did i say the tories would do any better ? i said it was classic of the way nulabour as a politicla movement think and typical of the policies. It's class snobbery in the sense that they believe in a progressive tax system which discourages progress for those on low to middling incomes. They have this class warrior thing going on where they want to subsidise those on benefits or those on low incomes, but rather than get that subsidy from the high end of income earners most of it arrives by a high marginal tax burden on those only a level or two up from those on low incomes.

    do the numbers if you don't believe me ?

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    apoth0r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryTechnician View Post
    As someone who is active in the community in an area with a lot of social housing, I can't say I agree with that assessment. In a lot of areas social deprivation is still very high.
    Yes deprivation is still high, doesn't mean there aren't opportunities?
    Where are my opportunities, oh yes thats right in the 4500 quid i owe from actually finding out that my family and i couldn't afford a university education. God forbid people who pay a mortgage and actually try to make a living for themselves rather then sponging off a system of excuse and laziness!

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    the Scottish system for uni has gone to pot too now. We get all our tuition fees paid, but the way they are dumbing down entry requirements for the "underprivileged" is sickening. They wouldn't let my sister to do law at Edinburgh (she had 5 A's), because both her older siblings, and her parents have got a degree. Instead, they let some ned in from the scheme with a C in home economics. Fair enough let some schemie in and give them funding if they cant afford it, but there's no need to reduce the entry requirements. If they're not good clever enough, they're not clever enough. Would be interested to see figures of how many of these folk that get let in actually graduate.

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    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    Levelling the playing field is easier when you just try to drag it all down to the same level, rather than build up the lower areas.
    exactly. this is why there is a widening gap between rich and poor. In many cases, it's not worth getting out of bed for less than 35k a year for a regular job. Many many people understand this and know how to game the system and appreciate that it's a numbers game.

    back to the issue of top-up fees, for that payment to be worthwhile requires a career that can pay that back fairly quickly. The last thing we should have is that debt burden hanging over people for years and years, and in many cases the inexorable rise in salary to pay down that debt just doesn't happen....fine, you can say that if the earned income isn't there, the payments aren't made....but the debt doesn't go away.

    And the debt just keeps on accruing interest, this applies to both topup fee and student loan debt.

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    AngryTechnician's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    you clearly have been subsidised as someone on 'low income' as your top-up fees were waived.
    I never said I wasn't helped, but that was under the previous system of fees where there was no maintenance grant. Under the new system they aren't waived for people on low incomes (unless I've missed something), you are just eligible for a maintenance grant instead. The net result is the same. My point is that the new system of fees seems to be no improvement over the previous systems, which I believe is where we agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    i didn't say class snobbery was peculiar to nulabour
    When you label something as a 'nulabour' trait that implies you have a problem with that particular party than with the trait itself. If that isn't correct then I apologise but that is the way it came across.

    Quote Originally Posted by apoth0r View Post
    Yes deprivation is still high, doesn't mean there aren't opportunities?
    Nor does it mean there are not still substantial barriers and that someone's experience of having to overcome them is no longer relevant.

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