Tuesday 24-03-2015 - 14:44
Do you agree that every student has the right to access good quality public education? Tell us which policies you care about by playing our Elect or Reject game.
The right to quality public education is increasingly under threat. From rising fees in HE and FE, the removal of support systems and the introduction of unqualified teachers delivering classes.
The next government must ensure that public education remains accessible for all students whether they are asylum seekers, international students, on free school meals or disabled. Our Day of Action on Thursday 26 March is your opportunity to campaign on your campus about these issues!
Play ‘Elect or Reject’
We face many challenges in the quality of public education and we need your students to vote on which issues and polices matter the most to them. That’s why NUS has created ‘Elect of Reject’ – a game which gets students thinking about the General Election by asking them to either elect or reject the policies being touted by political candidates.
There are two ways to play the game; you can download the set of cards from NUS Connect and create your own bin and ballot box and play it with your students – or you can encourage your students to play the online version of the game by sharing it across your social media channels.
Full details and instructions for Elect or Reject can be found in our Day of Action toolkit here.
What we’re calling for
There are nine General Election policy asks we’re focussing on for this Day of Action:
- Tuition Fees – by the end of the next parliament, we want the next government to commit to a timetable for phasing out tuition fees and restoring the public funding of universities.
- Postgrad Funding – the government’s proposals that the new loans system will only be available to students under 30 years old is deeply unfair to mature students. We want this threshold to be lifted in order to widen access to education.
- 24+ Learner loans – we believe that all learners should have access to a free first level 2, 3 and 4 qualification, regardless of age. After their first qualification the government should continue to part fund courses. Loans should only be available in situations where fees are charged at present.
- EMA - Young people need adequate support for FE, so we’re calling for new, better EMA to be introduced.
- DSA – we’re calling for a permanent halt to the cuts and the DSA comprehensively reviewed.
- Public providers – we’re calling for the government to make a commitment to public education by ensuring that higher education providers whose education provision is profitmaking are unable to access any public subsidy.
- Keep teachers qualified in FE- we’re asking the government to restore the requirement for all teachers in FE to be fully qualified.
- Asylum Seekers – we’re calling for young refugee and asylum seekers to be able to access student loans and to be classified as home students for fee purposes.
- International students – We want the government to establish a financial protection scheme into which all education providers have to pay, to ensure that students can continue to live and study in the event of institutional failure, or funding sources being severed by natural or civil crises in their home country.
Need more information?
We’ve put together this Day of Action toolkit with more information on Elect or Reject and the policy asks we’ll be campaigning on.
In the run up to the General Election, NUS is holding regular Days of Action covering the key themes across the New Deal. You can find more information on our upcoming Days of Action online or by getting in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org.