Howard defends HECS scheme
PRIME Minister John Howard has defended the HECS contribution scheme amid revelations some students are leavinguniversity with debts of more than $50,000.
The HECS (Higher Education Contribution Scheme) ‘strikes a very good balance’, Mr Howard said yesterday.
‘‘About 75 per cent of a HECSfunded place is paid for by the taxpayer and 25 per cent by the
student, now that’s the average.
‘‘I think that’s a fair balance.’’
New Department of Education figures reportedly confirm students are leavinguniversity with debts much higher than the average of $10,500.
The figures show that more than 1000 finished their university studies owingmore than $50,000, while 5190 students left uni with debts of more than $40,000.