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How much are parents supposed to give their children when they go to university?
in Martin's blogs & appearances & MoneySavingExpert in the news
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MSE_Eesha MSE StaffMSE Staff
This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.
Read Martin's "How much are parents supposed to give their children when they go to university?" Blog.
Please click 'post reply' to discuss below.
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Add that to the tables above to present a more accurate picture.
Students with extremely well off parents and those with low income parents do very well, it is those in the middle that are often squeezed between loans that do not cover their needs and parents who can't afford to offer a lot of help.
They just see a pot of money & assume the parents will contribute but sometimes family dynamics means that parents will not contribute the shortfall in the maintenance loan amount.
In my family the student has a low maintenance loan based on his mothers' husbands high income. However he is not the father of the student & the relationship is not good so will not contribute. The student & his mother will have to find the shortfall. Tricky & stressful situation but that's family dynamics for you.
A part of me basically says "why should that be the state's problem?". It sounds harsh, but the state can't cover up for decisions which people make. Lots of students with higher (higher, theyre probably middling somewhere in the grand scheme) income parents really struggle at uni because of decisions made by their parents to take a bigger mortgage, expensive car or other debts instead of budgeting and planning to support their children through university. Should the state (given the premise on which the current system is based) basically subsidise parents' debts like that?
The real unfairness in the current system is that parents with two children at uni simultaneously are somehow assumes as having double the income - i.e. each child is assesed separately as having parents with the same income. Again, there's an argument to be made for parental planning and budgeting; but its still the kids who are affected worst.
The solution, obviously, is to treat students as adults, because they are! Fund all students the same regardless of parental income.
Not totally disagreeing with you but the comment above could easily be applied to the earlier statement you made:
The decision in this case being to have their kids close together in age.
The total cost (of support to 2 children) will be the same, but there is a higher expenditure in a short space of time than a family who spaced their children.
To quote you again,
Yes, and hence:
I think your missing the point. By all means students should work (if their course allows time and jobs are available), but the point of the blog was to provide a level playing field from which students can top up their loans/ grants/ parental contributions with work.
Final year students receive less since its not a full year (suposedly). They're expected to be working after graduating, so Student Finance figures are lower to not cover the summer period.