Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1106/31521

From The Socialist newspaper, 21 October 2020

Disabled students let down by "rotten education system"

Students demonstrating in London, photo Isai Priya

Students demonstrating in London, photo Isai Priya   (Click to enlarge)

Mark Sayers, Keighley

The UK's capitalist university system is rotten to the core. Universities' prime aim is not to provide education for students - but to generate income for their vice chancellors and management who make millions by ripping off students. For the past three years, I've endured an experience which many disabled students in this country have faced. Many like me have a bitter taste in their mouth regarding how we have been treated.

I chose to study an online history degree at the University of Birmingham because I worked full-time shifts - like many working-class people, I was unable to attend university in person. I thought it was the right choice for me. How wrong I was. Because I have dyslexia, I needed extra help with writing essays.

Universities in the UK now use private contractors to provide disability support. They will inform you this is to provide appropriate help for disabled students - this is a blatant lie. The University of Birmingham, like the majority of UK universities, use companies such as Clear Links, which seek to make profit from supporting students. This support is paid for by Student Finance England, who pay them millions of pounds of public money. And in my experience they were useless.

I found myself completing course work - without support - which I knew was not up to standard. As a result of going through two months of hell writing the first essay, I informed the history department that I was thinking of withdrawing from the degree. But before I decided to withdraw, I was charged for the second module, before it had even started. By now I had come to realise they had no interest in their students, apart from exploiting them for financial gain - charging extortionate fees for their online degree.

I went through a complaints process with the university, and then with an independent adjudicator. Ultimately, my case was rejected and I found myself unable to get my fees refunded. Because I had withdrawn from the University of Birmingham without being granted 'compassionate personal reasons', I am now unable to get financial support from Student finance England for future studies.

My experience is a clear reflection of how disabled students are treated in our rotten education system. It is not unique or unusual - there are literately tens of thousands of disabled students who have had a similar experience as me - if not far worse. And the underlying reason is that the education system serves capitalism rather than providing genuine education for students (search "What would socialist universities look like?" at socialistparty.org.uk).

Birmingham's vice-chancellor earns 440,000 a year. Meanwhile, the university will not return a measly 3,500 to a student who was treated with contempt. This just shows where universities' priorities are - and it's certainly not providing education for their students.

Donate to the Socialist Party

Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

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.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 21 October 2020:


Lockdown

Health before profit - Work or full pay

Wales 'firebreak' lockdown fails to protect workers

Liverpool lockdown: suspicion and anger

Newcastle lockdown: stress and breakdowns

Leicester lockdown: disillusionment and anger


Unison

Why the Socialist Party is backing Hugo Pierre for Unison general secretary


International

Nigeria protests: 'This movement needs to fight the whole rotten capitalist system'

Horrific murder in Paris: fight intolerance and racism!

South Africa: Mass day of action for permanent jobs and a living wage


News

Tories reduce winter homeless funding: reverse the cuts,use the empty homes!

World capitalism's terrified strategists abandon austerity - for now


Coronavirus

Test and Trace U-turn on stopping local case reporting

Oxbridge gets private Covid tests: pool resources to test us all!

Millennials disillusioned with 'democracy'

Under the microscope


Workplace

RMT: Programme to fight redundancies and cuts

Action on Covid transmission in schools now

FCC dismiss Unison activist Tony Smith

Optare workers strike over pay broken 'promise'

Solidarity with Deliveroo Couriers in York


Campaigns

NHS workers

Students: Give us our money back

Fight for your future at the online rally

Southampton: Coxford community condemns racist attack

Socialism 2020: Will you help our finance appeal?

Selling the Socialist: increase in NHS anger

Truth about Zane: Cover-up Tories crack

Kent: Chaotic privatised asylum process

Teignmouth hospital closure threat ... again!


Readers' opinion

Books that inspired me: For Whom the Bell Tolls

Beware the billionaires bearing gifts

Disabled students let down by "rotten education system"

The Socialist Inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 21 October 2020   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Disabled:

triangleCripTales: A painful reflection of a system that pits us against each other

triangleFilm: 'Sick' - 'They've got people looking in the wrong direction'

triangleCapitalism cause of disproportionate disabled deaths and isolation

triangleCall for an increase in PIP due to Covid-19

triangleStep forward for campaign to reverse mobility pass cuts in Nottingham

Students:

triangleRent strikers' victory in student halls

triangle

Solidarity with Brighton UCU strike - we won't pay for Covid crisis

triangleManchester student occupation - end rip-off rent, free education now

triangleWales exams scrapped: What's behind the headline?

Education:

triangleHackney: Stop plan to halve school support staff!

triangleWhat will the spending review mean for me?

triangleCampaign for school Covid safety must continue

University:

triangleStrike action ballot at UEL over job cuts

triangleSolidarity with Manchester students - fight for democratic control of campus safety

Universities:

triangleTories student 'evacuation' plan won't work

Student:

triangleA lockdown that doesn't include education?

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

2/12/20

Retail

Arcadia and Debenhams closures: Nationalise to save jobs and pensions

2/12/20

Wales

Wales TUSC plans to mount an electoral challenge

2/12/20

Manchester

Rent strikers' victory in student halls

2/12/20

Austerity

Unions must resist return to austerity

2/12/20

Covid

Better for billionaires. Worse for workers

2/12/20

Carbon

'Building back greener' - yet more Tory greenwash

2/12/20

Poverty

Scotland: Campaign wins end to period poverty

2/12/20

NHS

NHS: Underfunded, understaffed, underpaid

2/12/20

Engels

Review: Friedrich Engels - Condition of the working class in England

2/12/20

Ethiopia

Conflict in Ethiopia: ethnic-linguistic divisions are the historical product of capitalist inequality

2/12/20

Low pay

Fast fashion, big profits, low pay

2/12/20

TV

TV: The Social Dilemma

2/12/20

Football

Diego Maradona - Working-class rebel, football genius

2/12/20

Socialist

Socialist Inbox

2/12/20

Labour

Labour meeting lets MP get away with 'Spycops' abstention

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


December 2020

November 2020

October 2020

September 2020

August 2020

July 2020

June 2020

May 2020

April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999