Cuts to tuition fees that could save students at least £5,000 over a three-year course are being considered by the Chancellor, it has been reported.
Philip Hammond is looking at capping annual charges at £7,500 instead of the current level of £9,250. The reported move comes amid concern from Conservatives about their low support base among young people, who voted for Labour in huge numbers in the June election based on Labours and Jeremy Corbyns promise to “deal with” student debt.
Cutting the 6.1% interest rate on student loans and charging different fees depending either on the subject or graduate employment rates are reportedly also among the proposals.
Ministers have voiced concerns that university vice chancellors get paid too much and students are not getting value for money from the debts they come out with.
At a Lords committee hearing earlier this week Mr Hammond signalled that value for money depending on the course was an issue he was looking at.
He told the Lords Economic Affairs Committee there was a “significant difference” between graduates who take degrees with differing employment opportunities but come out with the same debts.
He added: “We need to look at that.”