Friday, February 19, 2010

Ruskin’s Wrestle with Government

The clash between Anglia Ruskin and HMG about a £655,000 fine for taking too many students is a tough one to call.

I want to support the university and blame the new cap on admissions numbers for the fine, given for taking on too many students last September. However, with a drop-out rate of nearly a quarter it’s clear that there is something wrong with either the institution or the system it is playing.

Access to Higher Education should be based on ability and ambition. If students lack either of those qualities then the only thing going to university can do is land them in debt.

1 comment:

  1. ARU has always had a high drop-out rate. It also takes a high proportion of mature students, and those from wider social backgrounds, who are particularly prone to drop out for financial reasons. As you say, access to HE should be based on ability, not on wealth or social background. "Ambition", is slightly more ambiguous - I hope it still includes the desire to learn, and not just the desire to be affluent or advance socially. The advantage of mature students was always that they actively wanted to be there, rather than that they were just there as part of growing up.