THE Abbott Government has been told by one of its own senators to tweak higher education reforms to make sure a university education was still accessible for as many people as possible.
Nationals senator Bridget McKenzie chairs a parliamentary committee that wants the government to give regional universities more help and change its plans to hike interest rates on student debts.
The existing system provided access to those previously locked out of higher education, she said. “We don't want to stop that increase in access.”
The Senate was yesterday scheduled to consider legislation for the overhaul of higher education, which includes deregulating fees, cutting student funding, expanding commonwealth support to private providers and charging real interest on student debts.
Senator McKenzie said it was up to Education Minister Christopher Pyne to decide the best model.