Students from the University of Sheffield have today occupied Nick Clegg’s constituency office “in the name of free education” – against tuition fees, privatization and cutbacks.
Speaking to the Student Assembly Against Austerity, activist Chris Saltmarsh said:
“We at the free university of Sheffield, an autonomous collective for free education, occupied Nick clegg’s constituency office until police intimidated us out. Right now are still outside the office and are planning to run seminars”
In a statement to the press, the occupiers have said:
“Currently universities are built on the idea that students are customers and that education is a personal investment. We believe that education needs to be seen as a public good which benefits society as a whole. It must be free and accessible to everybody, and the responsibility for this should be distributed throughout society.
This responsibility lies with those who can afford it – the rich and the corporations—not with those who benefit from it the most. Students should not be crippled by debt simply for choosing higher education.”
They continued: “We need to remind ourselves of education’s intrinsic value; it can give us fulfilment, empowerment and a shared sense of cooperation – something which has been lost in today’s universities.”