A parliamentary petition calling for college funding to be raised to ‘sustainable levels’ has been launched, FE Week reports.
The petition was released shortly ahead of Colleges Week, which took place from 15-19 October. The week-long initiative saw events taking place across the country designed to inspire greater investment in colleges.
Learners at Brockenhurst College are said to have started the petition, which calls on the government to ‘urgently increase college funding to sustainable levels, including immediate parity with recently announced increases to schools funding’.
The petition explains how a boost in funding will give students a fair chance, pay college staff the salaries they deserve and help to provide the high-quality skills the UK needs.
It has claimed that funding for colleges has decreased by nearly 30% in the past decade.
Consequences of cuts to the budget
Ten years of almost continuous cuts and persistent reforms has resulted in a large drop in the resources available for teaching and support for learners in sixth form and colleges, the petition outlined.
Other potential consequences of the cuts and reforms include limited course choice; fewer adults in education; pressures on staff pay and workload; along with a growing population that is unable to acquire the essential skills the UK needs to secure prosperity after Britain leaves the EU, the petition states.
A hearing of the education select committee took place just over one week ago, at which education leaders made a plea for increased core funding rather than ‘initiative mania’.
The petition has well surpassed 10,000 signatures, meaning the government has to respond to it. If it reaches 100,000 signatures the issue will be considered for debate in parliament. If it’s something you feel passionate about, you can sign it here.