BT.com reports that school leavers should be given £10,000 of taxpayers’ money to continue their education, a study suggests. It says that every young person in England, as well as adults who did not go to university, should be given state funding to use towards university tuition fees, or the cost of other qualifications.
The move would help to boost adult and further education, and encourage take-up of a wider range of courses, the research paper argues.
Such a scheme – dubbed a “national learning entitlement”, or NLE – would cost the public purse around £8.5 billion a year, the study authors calculate.
The paper, published by the Centre for Learning and Life Chances in Knowledge Economics Societies (LLAKES) at the UCL Institute of Education, proposes every young person become eligible for the funding on their 18th birthday.
The money could be used towards full-time degree courses, the authors suggest, or for other forms of education such as part-time study, and could be spread out over a lifetime if necessary.
The funding would also be available to adults who have not studied for a degree, but want to return to education.
The paper argues: “The proposal takes the debate beyond the current narrow focus on university education and student debt, to a broader and more inclusive system which would encourage learning at all ages by a diverse range of students, at a lower cost than the abolition of university fees.”
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