Reforms to the funding of higher education over the past decade, although not perfect, have been broadly successful. There’s now record levels of individuals and investment in English universities.
Theresa May, though, thought differently. Immediately after the last election, in response to a staggering number of young people turning their back on the Tories, she commissioned the Augar Review, promising major reforms to tuition fees. Much like the emergence of her flagship net migration target, the idea was actually first floated – unofficially – by her then First Secretary of State Damian Green.
The announcement was rooted in the erroneous belief that young people flocked to Jeremy Corbyn because of his promise to abolish tuition fees and student debt, deflecting from the Prime Minister's other policy and leadership failings.