Student loans 'cost taxpayer more than a school place'

Student loan debts are written off after 30 years. Credit: Johnny Green/PA Wire

The impact of the Government's major student loans shake-up could end up costing the taxpayer more money per year than sending a child to secondary school, according to a new report.

The IFS's new report looks at the group of English, full-time undergraduates who started university in 2012 - the first year of the new fees system.

The report says that once other types of Government spending on undergraduates is taken into account - such as grants for students and teaching funding for universities - each student costs the taxpayer just over £24,500 in total over the whole of their degree course.

This works out at around £7,600 per year of study, for an average course of 3.2 years - more than the £6,000 on average that the Government spent on each secondary school pupil in 2012/13, the IFS said.