A scheme to reduce the student loan debts of graduates who spend a gap year doing voluntary work before starting their careers is being considered by the Government.
Students would need to enrol on approved schemes in Britain to qualify for the discount under the proposal being drawn up by a commission set up to encourage more young people to volunteer.
Around 26,000 students take gap years between school and university, and a further 20,000 after graduation. Earlier this year a report questioned the value of some gap year activities.
A Labour spokesman said ministers would look at schemes for possible inclusion in the party's manifesto for the next general election.
Source: By Liz Lightfoot, Education Correspondent