Theresa May to set out tuition fee proposals – politics live

Good morning and welcome to the politics live blog. The main story this morning is Theresa May’s attempt to take back control of the news agenda by talking about something that’s not Brexit.

In a speech to be delivered in Derby this afternoon, the prime minister will set out how she believes the government can reverse a trend that “leaves students from the lowest-income households bearing the highest levels of debt” and force cuts to the fees charged for some courses.

May will announce a review of education funding for over-18s in England that the new education secretary, Damian Hinds, has already hinted is likely to recommend that some institutions cut fees for social science and humanities courses; particularly where recent graduates have earned lower salaries.

But the proposals have received short shrift from May’s party colleagues and the higher education sector.

Most of this morning’s papers feature the story prominently.

The Guardian

Guardian front page, Monday 19 February 2018: May warning to universities over high cost of tuition fees

February 18, 2018

The Times of London

Tomorrow’s front page: Savers lose millions to retirement fraudsters #tomorrowspapertoday

February 18, 2018

The Telegraph

The front page of tomorrow’s Daily Telegraph: ‘Hidden calories fuelling obesity’ #TomorrowsPapersToday

February 18, 2018

Helena Lee

Monday’s i: Tuition fee reforms ‘will be divisive’ #tomorrowspaperstoday

February 18, 2018

Helena Lee

Monday’s Metro: “PM: Uni fees unfair and poor value” #tomorrowspaperstoday

February 18, 2018

Hammond to ditch red box – and announcements

The chancellor, Philip Hammond, will ditch the budget red box for a stripped-down spring statement with no major tax or spending announcements, the Treasury says. The story makes the front page of this morning’s Financial Times:

Helena Lee

Monday’s Financial Times: “Trump hits out at FBI inquiry and says Moscow is laughing at turmoil” #tomorrowspaperstoday

February 18, 2018

Corbyn highlights problem of racist abuse

The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has warned that Muslim women are facing routine racist abuse on the streets of the UK, saying Islamophobia is a “real problem in our society, as is other forms of racism like antisemitism and racism against people of Afro-Caribbean heritage”.

This weekend, the party expelled an activist who had previously been suspended over allegations of anti-semitic abuse as it seeks to get a grip on the problem within its own ranks.

MP makes welcome return

The former cabinet minister, James Brokenshire, returns to parliament for the first time since he underwent lung surgery.

James Brokenshire

Pleased to say that I’ve been recovering strongly after my lung surgery a month ago. Have had incredible love and support from family and overwhelmed by so many kind emails, letters and messages. Will be back at Westminster when the Commons returns on Tuesday ?

February 18, 2018

Boundary review in doubt

The government is facing calls for an early Commons vote on plans to cut the number of MPs from 650 to 600. One is due in the autumn but a committee of MPs is warning it is unlikely to pass. If that happens, they say, it would be too late to carry out a fresh boundary review in time for the 2022 general election.


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