Wow. When I signed the petition a couple of days ago, it had a few hundred signatures on it. It’s put on another few thousand today, presumably in response to messages circulating on the usual social networking sites and this email, sent by Marianne Cantieri, OUSA President, to all current OU students this morning.
We don’t send many communications direct to your mailbox since we’re only too well aware of the frustrations of spamming. However we hope you’ll agree that we made the right decision on this occasion since literally a couple of minutes of your time could help to save everything we hold most dear about our University.
You will be well aware of the UK government’s proposals to make massive cuts to public funding for Higher Ed and to shift a lot of the costs onto the shoulders of students. The changes will affect different sections of our student membership in different ways depending on where they live and what they are studying. The OU is providing lots of detailed information for students and we’ve given the web link to their fees information below.
However, we are writing to you about something that affects all of our students wherever they live and whatever they are studying – and that we believe all of our students really care about – keeping our University truly open!
We are supporting a petition on the UK Parliamentary website. If we can get 100,000 signatures we have a chance of forcing a debate in Parliament which might provide us with a real turning point in the fight to ensure that our University can go on providing life-changing opportunities to those who need them the most.
Please give us your support by a) signing the petition yourself by following the link below b) passing on the link to any friends and family members who you think might also want to make a contribution to supporting this fantastic institution.
The Petition: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/22316
More OUSA information: http://www.open.ac.uk/ousa/
OU Fees information: http://www8.open.ac.uk/study/explained/fees-2012
Only another 80,000 required – and it may be debated. Gaining 100,000 signatures in itself, as Marianne points out, doesn’t automatically mean that a debate has to be scheduled – there is some wriggle room for the government (click the ‘i’ icon next to the final step for a more detailed explanation of the epetition rules).
However, let’s not worry about that for the moment … please sign the petition!