This blog has been running for 5 years. It is not just a site for commentary but has been used for investigative work, much of which was picked up subsequently by mainstream and industry press. Much of its content has been devoted to student loans, the ‘RAB charge’ and private HE providers.
Key stories include:
2013 We broke the redaction on the government-commissioned Rothschild report into the sale of student loans. This is still the only public source of information on sale progress. Rothschild told the government: ‘Capitalism is suspended’.
2013/14 Coverage of the multi-million pound budgetary crisis in the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills that was only averted when the Treasury agreed to change the accounting and budgeting conventions for student loans.
2014 This blog has covered government nurturing of ‘new Providers’ (now known as alternative providers or challenger institutions) in detail. This culminated in a collaboration with the Guardian on ‘Cashpoint Colleges’ that led to a National Audit Office enquiry and two Public Accounts Committee hearings.
2015 Analysis of the government’s decisions to freeze the repayment threshold for loan repayments and to abolish maintenance grants. These represent a retrospective price hike for graduates – with the majority of the additional repayments falling on poorer students – and a tax on social mobility.
2014 & 2015 How discount rates affect student loan repayment projections and why they were changed.
2016 The Student Loans Company took down its repayment calculator after criticism. The SLC assumed all graduates were male and attributed misleading annual salary increases to all borrowers.
I write and research as a freelancer on higher education.
I teach at CityLit and Central Saint Martins as an hourly paid lecturer. Mainly various bits of mathematics from a philosophical or cultural history viewpoint, with an emphasis on geometry and ideas. I am the co-founder of Fine Art Maths Centre at Central Saint Martins.
I am the author of the (unfortunately) prescient The Great University Gamble: money, markets and the future of higher education and more recently a pamphlet for Higher Education Policy Institute on accounting and budgeting for student loans.
I hold a doctorate from the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (now at Kingston University) and have taught and supervised at Middlesex University, University of Westminster and Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design. Information on my philosophy and arts research can be found here:
All views here are personal. This blog is run on a voluntary basis with no commercial or outside support.
Contact: andrewjmcgettigan AT gmail.com