HC Deb 06 February 1969 vol 777 cc553-4
1. Mr. Dalyell

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will now consider plans for requiring students at universities and colleges of higher education to sign cheques for the full economic cost of their education, after the award of grants has been appropriately adjusted; and if he will take steps to make students more aware of the real cost to public funds of their education.

The Secretary of State for Education and Science (Mr. Edward Short)

If, as the Question implies, awards were adjusted so that students paid no more than at present, I doubt whether the charging of an economic fee would meet my hon. Friend's point. I myself, and many other hon. Members, spoke of the cost of higher education in last week's debate on the universities and there will be much public discussion of the matter during the coming months.—[Vol. 776, c. 1341–1464.]

Mr. Dalyell

Many students have no conception of the real cost of the courses which they are doing. If the scheme implied in my question is unacceptable, has the Secretary of State an alternative?

Mr. Short

Discussions are now going on about fees in universities, but even if a student were aware of the economic cost of his course, I doubt whether he would work any harder.