Remedial Class Struggle

Jim heartfield Jim at
Thu Jun 11 03:21:05 PDT 1998

In message <199806092152.RAA27688 at>, hoov <hoov at> writes
>expanded access to higher ed was always a dangerous proposition for
>the capitalist class...democratizatized access, no matter the
>limitations, offers potential empowerment which is a threat to the
>established order...

I'm not so sure. The British Higher Education sector expanded dramatically from the early eighties till now, from around half a million to a million and a half. The expansion is contemporaneous with the growth of Youth unemployment. Successive governments adopted a rhetoric of access for all. The effect is that the colleges expanded without the resources to fund quality education, and absorbed large numbers of young people who would otherwise be counted unemployed kicking their heels on the streets.

The transition from a grant-funded system to a US style, loan funded one has caused a hiccup in the growth of student numbers, but not a reversal - indicating that it is a demand-led growth, as young people are persuaded that their position in the jobs market is a consequence of their own lack of training rather than the overall shortfall in employment. -- Jim heartfield

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