Scrap tuition fees, say students taking part in ‘week of action’

College students are rallying on campuses to demand that politicians scrap tuition fees and consider the pupil voice critically.

The week-lengthy protests, that start today on university campuses around the country, will build up to a national demonstration ahead of the standard election.

These taking portion in the “week of action”, organised by the Pupil Assembly Towards Austerity and the National Campaign Towards Costs and Cuts, incorporate students at Durham University, Goldsmiths University and London Metropolitan University.

College students are also gathering at the University of East Anglia (UEA), where there will be a public rally with speakers from the National Union of College students (NUS). Meanwhile at Falmouth University students are organising banner demonstrations.

Across these campuses college students are also anticipated to open stalls, organise sit-ins and perform mass petitioning to get their message across.

Fiona Edwards, one of the organisers of the Pupil Assembly Against Austerity, and of the week of action, says: “We’re asking for a totally free schooling and are receiving the word out. We’re having lots of stalls, banner drops and public meetings.

“This is the beginning of a whole series of action in between now and the standard election to increase the demands of the student motion and put politicians under pressure to help us.”

Edwards says that young individuals are much more engaged than they have been in the previous. “We are seeing an enhance in student activism on campus,” she says. “Young people are ready to battle the government and there is a good deal to battle for.”

The rallies construct up to a nationwide demonstration which will take area on 19 November, in which students will march through central London to put pressure on politicians. Up to 10,000 people are anticipated to attend, which would make it the greatest student demonstration in 4 many years.

Kirsty Haigh, an organiser for the National Campaign Against Costs and Cuts and vice president of NUS Scotland, says: “This yr will see a major fightback [from students] towards privatisation and attacks on living requirements, the most significant because 2010-11.

“With a general election in Might, we will be putting free of charge schooling onto the political agenda, not by softening our place but by generating our tips extremely hard to ignore.”

Aaron Kiely, one of the organisers of the Student Assembly Against Austerity, also tends to make it clear that college students are going to be active on campuses above the coming months.

He says: “This Tory-led government has failed college students. We are facing soaring pupil debt, growing rents and savage cuts to schooling and all the public companies students rely on.

“We are going to be energetic the two on our campuses and outdoors MPs’ offices in purchase to develop a movement that cannot be ignored once again. Our message to all politicians and political parties is clear: we want an end to austerity, student debt and tuition costs.”

The National Union of College students (NUS) has also referred to as on politicians to scrap tuition costs. It has not too long ago released its manifesto, which outlines what the 600-sturdy body of student unions will be demanding from politicians in 2015.

The manifesto, named the “new deal for the subsequent generation”, lists 30 demands, under the categories of schooling, function and community. Demands include the introduction of an apprentice minimal wage and the reducing of the voting age to sixteen.

Toni Pearce, president of the NUS, not too long ago explained that students are “more engaged than ever before” and that “this is the 12 months when they are going to make a difference”. She warned that “politicians would be stupid to disregard them”.

Pearce says: “What’s exciting about this is that it’s one more instance of college students obtaining together and mobilising politically for some thing that they care about. I genuinely hope that the public and the dad and mom of youthful individuals see that what we’re asking for is not special treatment method, it’s about wanting a fairer society.

“It’s not just about this election, it is about setting the precedent for the long term that you cannot shut youthful individuals out of politics.”

• To locate out what’s going on on your campus – or to set one thing up – join the Pupil Assembly Against Austerity’s Facebook group.

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