One in 10 students in England ‘rich enough to avoid big debts’

About 10% of students in English universities avoid having to rack up large debts and pay “sky-high” interest rates because they are rich enough to pay their fees upfront, researchers have said.

Approximately 110,000 undergraduates are “escaping” the student fee system by paying for university in one go thanks to a “get-out-of-jail-free card” from their wealthy families, according to a think-tank.

The study, by the Intergenerational Foundation, also found that the proportion of students who self-fund is higher at the Russell Group of elite UK institutions, such as Oxford and Cambridge universities.

Angus Hanton, the co-founder of the thinktank, said its report “makes a mockery of claims that the current system is progressive, since the wealthiest kids are not even in the system”. Read more.