Student loan repayment rise adds to budget woes

KU students graduating this year will face increased loan repayments due to the government freezing the repayment salary threshold.

This will leave graduates, who are earning above the student loan repayment threshold of £27,295 paying around an extra £110 a year from April.

KU graduate Sabrina Juul is one of the many that will be affected by the rise in student loan repayment rates.

She said: “I don’t agree with the [increased repayment rates] I think education should be free for all.

“Increasing [student loan repayment rates] especially during this period of scarcity, inflation, companies not hiring as many people and prices going up is just another way that the government is [mistreating students].”

“We want to encourage people to seek out higher education not be discouraged from it because of the fees.”

Sabrina Juul, KU Graduate

With a national insurance increase of 1.25 per cent and inflation predicted to hit 7 per cent in spring according to the Bank of England, it certainly is an expensive time to be a recently graduated student.

Additionally, the think tank Resolution Foundation reported that wage growth wouldn’t start increasing until the end of 2022.

However, recent KU graduate Emily Walker has a different perspective.

She said: “Although the student loan repayment has risen, I do not think it will impact me massively as you still have to be earning a certain wage in order to pay it back, plus it’s only a little bit at a time.”

When asked about the expenses of being a student in today’s climate, Juul said “The fact that we even have to take out loans for higher education is appalling.

“We want to encourage people to seek out higher education not be discouraged from it because of the fees.”

The National Union of Students (NUS) has expressed its disagreement with the government’s plan to escalate student loan repayments, saying that students have been “ignored and scapegoated throughout the pandemic” and they are being made to “foot the bill for their [government’s] poor leadership.”

NUS has created a petition to encourage the government to rethink its decision which has currently reached nearly 20,000 signatures.

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She/Her
Third-year journalism student at Kingston University
I like to write about sustainability, social issues, feminism and pop culture.

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