Pause or Pay UK is a UK-wide cross-university action group led by students that emerged as a response to the disruption of studio-based learning by the pandemic. We're from the Royal College of Art (RCA), University of the Arts London (UAL), Glasgow School of Art (GSA) and Kingston School of Art (KSA) and always looking to expand! We’re working closely alongside other student and staff action groups, such as the UCU branches at our universities, Liberate the University and Unis Resist Border Controls. To date, we have campaigned to MPs, initiated complaints procedures at various institutions and supported tuition fee strikes. We are in the process of firming up a new manifesto and strategy to carry us over summer and into the new academic year, as social-distancing looks to continue for some time.
The current strategy is to exhaust all internal institutional complaints procedures so that we can bring the case to the OIA (Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education) and other higher education ombudsmen for specific regions. We’re adopting this strategy as Universities Minister Michelle Donelan has stated that universities are autonomous and are responsible for setting their own fees, in response to campaigning from various groups, including Pause or Pay UK, on tuition fee refunds (quote below).
“If students have concerns, there is a process in place. They should first raise their concerns with their university. If their concerns remain unresolved, students at providers in England or Wales can ask the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education to consider their complaint”
You can read more of her response here: https://dfemedia.blog.gov.uk/2020/04/09/university-students-covid19-faq/.
We’re aiming to eventually convince our universities to lobby the government for a sector-wide bailout with this action. To do this – we need your help! Come join us by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org!