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Funding lifelong learning should not lead to deeper debts Letters

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It is good that universities are opposed to educational restrictions (Universities oppose plan to introduce student limit and loans in England, 9 May). But when it comes to adult education and lifelong learning, the challenge is not only to limit access to credit, but also to the debt itself.

The catastrophic collapse of distance learning in Britain, caused by a threefold increase in the coalition government’s tuition fees, was due to the denial that indebtedness in later life is different from making life choices or going to university at 18 years old. For adult learners, this may be a choice: take out a loan to study or spend a family vacation this year.

The study is published Wonhe is reaffirming support for lifelong learning this week, but not for adult learners to delve into debt. As noted by the Association of Universities of Lifelong Learning in its response to a government consultation, the right should be to lifelong learning, not to debt dragging. Funding is needed for older people to re-enroll – except in the form of loans.
Professor Jonathan Mitch
Chairman of the Association of Universities of Continuing Education

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