What would it take to make prospective barristers riot? You would have thought an 11 per cent rise in the BPTC fee might just do it. When faced with rising tuition fees, or pretty much anything that fails to tickle their fancy, the general undergraduate response seems to be to riot, or for the more lackadaisical, occupy.
The prospect of being kettled must be too much for the thousands of hopefuls, some of whom are now set to pay £17,350 for a course with a slim chance of success. In 2010 to 2011, 444 pupillages were obtained while another 1,682 students enrolled on the BPTC.
Prospective pupils are keeping schtum about the increase, with only a couple of students taking to Twitter to voice their anger. Whether this is a sign that those entering the profession are anxious that any protest might ruin their already slim chance of success, or simply a sense of resignation in the face of lining providers’ pockets, we don’t know. Perhaps it’s that those who are set on becoming barristers can afford to disregard an increase of thousands of pounds.
But there is a disappointing lack of occupation or other protest to the news - surely just an encouragement to the providers to keep hiking those fees further.
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