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From The Socialist newspaper, 12 September 2018

Students unite and fight - free education now!

London: Socialist Students Budget Day protest, 22.11.17, photo Mary Finch

London: Socialist Students Budget Day protest, 22.11.17, photo Mary Finch   (Click to enlarge)

Dana Harris, Birmingham Socialist Students

Since 2010 students have been paying 9,000 a year for university tuition fees. In 2017 the total student debt in the UK rose to over 100 billion, according to the Student Loans Company.

Students are faced with the inescapable reality that if we want higher education we will leave uni with over 50,000 in debt. We will spend the next 30 years of our lives paying it off - if we can ever afford to at all.

And the bosses don't spend this vast sum of money on the needs of students by providing affordable housing or crucial counselling services.

Instead it's being creamed off by the bureaucratic fat cats, such as the University of Birmingham's vice-chancellor, David Eastwood. He receives a 439,000 salary package and is the highest paid uni boss in Britain.

The last general election saw a huge movement of young people behind Jeremy Corbyn's anti-austerity manifesto. It pledged to scrap tuition fees and reinstate maintenance grants for higher education, among many other pro-youth policies.

However, Corbyn and the union leaders have not yet mobilised this huge potential force. And the right-wing leaders of the National Union of Students (NUS) have left it to waste.

Last year, Socialist Students called for students across Britain to organise, to walk out of classes and march for free education on the Tories' Budget Day to make our demands heard. Where was the rallying cry from the official leaders of the students' and workers' movements?

Young people and students cannot wait for a Corbyn-led government: we need action now. We must start to build our own movement to unite students and workers and force the Tories out, whether or not the NUS supports it.

We must demonstrate and organise to fight for free education, to scrap student debt, and to end universities being treated like big business by the super-rich and their representatives. If you agree, join Socialist Students!

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 12 September 2018:


What we think

Corbyn must lead in fight against the Blairites


News

Tories in chaos - general election now!

Enfield North Labour Party votes 'no confidence' in its MP

4m children in homes that can't afford fruit and veg

Fearful bosses call for 'fairer capitalism'...

School students in solitary: for full funding, not exclusion!

Them & Us


Financial crash

10 years since the financial crash - the socialist answer to capitalist crisis


Workplace

NSSN rally: militant trade unionists share ideas to win for workers

TUC congress Brexit debate: unions must lead fight for a general election

Guards move closer to beating driver-only operation on Merseyrail giving confidence to other strikes

Cardiff Uber Eats couriers strike back against bosses

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

Nicaragua: With the people against the Ortega government and imperialism

Support for Putin's regime dips over major attacks on state pensions

Sweden: left and far right gain as establishment parties falter

Ireland housing occupations


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Catford campaign against regeneration

Students unite and fight - free education now!

Reading council plans privatisation - set a no-cuts budget instead!

EDL outnumbered and confronted in Worcester

Fight against billionaire Newcastle boss Mike Ashley continues


Opinion

When working class women dominated football

The Socialist inbox


 

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Related links:

Students:

triangleSocialist Students & Young Socialists national zoom rally

triangleFight the schools Covid crisis

triangleTory schools chaos - Unions must fight for safety

Unite:

triangleLondon bus drivers begin strike ballot over remote sign-on dispute

triangleDover: Solidarity with refugees - applause and cheers for socialist ideas to unite working class

triangleLondon bus drivers poised for strike action

triangleUnite union branch pledges to support socialist candidates who oppose cuts

Education:

triangleSeptember school return must be safe for all workers and students

triangle"As a working-class student, I already faced struggles"

triangleStudent protests force government retreat

Socialist:

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: Tories in Crisis

triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: The Labour Party - what is its future?

Socialist Students:

triangleYoung Socialists and Socialist Students day of action

Debt:

triangleAct now to cancel Covid crisis rents and debt

Student:

triangleStudents 2 : 0 Tories - Protests work!

Tuition Fees:

trianglePay full fees for virtual courses? - No way!

University:

triangleAfter Scottish government U-turn, Young Socialists fight for a future on A-Level results day

Young people:

triangleCovid generation says 'fund our future'

NUS:

triangleHow students can fight and win

Birmingham:

triangleBlame politicians, not workers and young people

Higher Education:

triangleReject the university employers' offer on pay, workload and casualisation

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