Naomi Long questions Vince Cable in Westminster over University Fees

Alliance East Belfast MP Naomi Long has asked a question to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Vince Cable during the debate in the House of Commons on the Browne Review of University fees.

She put it to the Secretary of State that the belief in the report that competition for students on price was wrong and that students should be choosing a course that best suits them rather than the course they can afford.

Question asked by Naomi Long MP on 12th October 2010

Naomi Long (Belfast East) (Alliance): A number of Members have referred to the most regressive part of the report on variable fees, although it promotes as a positive the proposal that universities should compete on price. Will the Secretary of State give us his reassurance that he will look at that again to ensure that students choose the course best matched to their intellect and ability, not their bank balance?

Vince Cable: We already have variable fees as a result of the system that was brought in under the last Government. The difficult issue now is how far to allow variability, particularly for a small group of universities that want much larger fees, and, as I have already said, I am very conscious of the problems that that would present.

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