Monday, 20 December 2010

Universities receive 9% funding cut from April... fund for poorest students slashed by 11%

The government today continued on its relentless mission to decimate public services with a dramatic reduction in funding to higher education to be introduced before the income from higher fees are introduced. This for a sector at the tail end of a programme of efficiency savings introduced by the last government.

There are four interesting points to be made about the latest announcement:

1) Despite the changes to HE funding, including the massive increases in tuition fees, being portrayed by the government as necessary for slashing the deficit, the total cost of the system to the exchequer is forecast to be the same or even higher than the current system. Therefore, one can only conclude that, in this instance, the government's ideological agenda has been exposed for what it is.

2) One of the largest percentage cuts in 2011 will be to the Access to Learning Fund, which will see more than 11% of its funding disappear. This fund, incidentally, is to provide financial support for those on full or part-time courses who are suffering from financial hardship.

3) Although the government has headlined a 6% cut to universities' budgets, the actual figure is 9.4%, taking out 'loans' from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to the sector, and including only grants and recurrent funding.

4) There will be a reduction in student numbers by 10,000 places in 2012/13 (the first year of the new tuition fee regime).

No comments:

Post a Comment