The Universities Fair Admissions Policy has been unveiled by the Government after two years of consultations. From 2011 the new policy will replace the current UCAS system.
Jim Knight, Minister for Education and Skills, announced the new system this morning.
"It is beholden upon us to remove the unfairness inherent in the University application system and replace it with one that is more suitable," he said. "This government has succeeded in getting rid of elitism in all but a few secondary schools, and these are mainly centred in the Westminster area. Our new Fair Admissions Policy for Universities will operate on the same equal-opportunity basis."
He went on to explain that University places will no longer be allocated on predicted 'A' level results, but on proximity to the University itself. Anyone who can walk to the University from home will be given first placement, followed by those who can cycle. This will save accommodation and travel costs by allowing most students to live at home. With those costs removed, the way will be clear to increase University course fees out of all proportion.
"This will remove the current elitist allocation of places based on results and bring all Universities up to a common level," he said. "The only Universities that will be exempt from the new system will be Oxford and Cambridge. They will be kept exclusively for the offspring of MPs and top civil servants, plus anyone on a BBC sponsorship."