Skip to main content

Student qualification funding cuts - the issue

In September 2007 the government announced that, from 2008, it proposes to withdraw £100m of funding for students studying for a higher education qualification equivalent to, or lower than, a qualification (ELQ) that they have already been awarded

These plans for students contradict the government's own lifelong learning agenda and will hit universities offering courses to adults and part-time students the hardest.

Analysis by UCU of the data on the potential financial implications for universities and colleges reveals that post-92 universities (former polytechnics) and institutions and departments (such as continuing education) that specialise in offering courses to workers wishing to retrain will be the biggest losers under the new regime.

We oppose this measure and have joined with others who share our view to seek a change of course.


UCU argues government should use 2009 budget to reverse degree cuts

UCU says the world has changed dramatically since 'calamitous' decision to axe access to second chance courses and the budget should be used to reverse the decision: Use budget to reverse degree cuts, says UCU

Government responds to petition

Many members signed a petition on the Number 10 Downing Street web site protesting at the government's decision to slash ELQ student funds: see the government reply here

UCU condemns refusal of the government to back down

The government's response to a highly critical parliamentary committee report on cuts in funding for second-time higher education students was arrogant and contradictory, UCU said: Government arrogant and contradictory on ELQs, says UCU

Keep up the pressure on ELQ cuts

UCU has given minister, Bill Rammell, early examples of the damaging impact of the ELQ decision. Government is reluctant to acknowledge any damage so it's imperative that we spell it out. Please keep Rob Copeland informed so we can provide up-to-date information. If you are able to raise the impact with local MPs please do, and ask them to write again to the Secretary of State, John Denham and Bill Rammell.

UCU vindicated by scathing parliamentary report on ELQ cuts

Read: Government must scrap degree funding changes following parliamentary report, says UCU

UCU hits out at government plans to change course funding

Read: UCU says changes to university funding will cause confusion and instability

Widening participation at the expense of students wishing to return to university is not acceptable

Read: UCU responds to government 2008-09 HE funding letter



What you can do

We need you to help us to keep the pressure on the government. Here's what you can do:

  • WRITE TO YOUR MP - UCU has been briefing MPs and you can help by writing to your MP: Funding withdrawal: the next stage in lobbying
  • SEND US YOUR STORIES - We need stories that highlight the real impact of the cuts. If you know people that have taken an ELQ or who would be prohibited from doing so if the cost was to rise, please email your stories to Jonathan White