The campaign RefundStudents said the Queen’s Speech given to Parliament yesterday missed a golden opportunity to redress the unfairness suffered by 2 million students in Britain.
Denied access to face-to-face education, students paying £9,500 per year and sometimes more to get their degrees have had their lectures on-line which they were not led to expect when applying to university.
“This is a clear breach of the implied terms of the contract they have entered into with Universities and colleges when paying for their education. By making their education a paid for service, the government has made students consumers and as such they have rights,” a RefundStudents spokesperson said.
By moving courses online, universities have been reduced to offering the style of education available from non-campus institutions such as the Open University, which charges around £6000 a year for its courses.
“There is no fault at issue here, but there is nevertheless a failure by Universities to provide the education they are contracted to do so with students. It is only right that there is a pro-rata refund of their fees.”
RefundStudents is seeking to mount a legal claim against universities and the Government to repay around £7000 to students to compensation for two years of on-line learning, as well as any rent they have paid when unable to occupy campus accommodation.
While announced a raft of measures and extra financial support for schooling, the Queen’s Speech made no mention of university students apart from the previously-trailed announcement of the Turing Scheme making provision for exchanges with oversees universities to replace the EU’s Erasmus Scheme.
The campaign is free to join and is being financed by crowd-funding. Full details can be found on www.refundstudents.org.
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