A DEBATE on the government's funding plans for higher education was held on Monday of last week. The education minister Charles Clarke and Oxford University student union president Will Straw were to be the headline acts. Clarke seems happy to preside over the most serious attacks on students since the introduction of top-up fees and the abolition of the grant.
As Clarke was announced he was greeted by an impromptu stage invasion by protesters chanting 'War on fees, not Iraq'. The students felt it was too late for debating, as the government's mind was made up. Clarke, who prides himself on his reputation as a 'bruiser', quickly scuttled off stage.
Many people in the audience cheered the protesters, and Clarke got a hard time when he eventually returned to the stage.