Gareth Thomas MP, Labour’s Shadow Higher Education Minister, commenting on today’s news on Offa, said:
“The Tory-led Government’s claim that universities will only charge £9000 in exceptional circumstances is looking more flimsy by the day. Today, Offa admitted it has no power to prevent universities charging the maximum and the head of Offa himself believes there is a ‘real risk’ that teenagers from low-income backgrounds will be put off applying to university.
“The time has come for the Tory-led Government to admit it got this policy all wrong. Not only it is unfair to treble tuition fees, it is also uncosted and unworkable. We know the Government thought it would be paying out average loans of £7500. This was clearly an underestimate and it is universities, students and the taxpayer who all look set to lose out from this ill-thought through policy.”