Conservative MP Richard Graham and Labour MP Nic Dakin have co-authored a letter to Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond seeking more funding for Further Education with the support of 165 MPs from four parties represented in Parliament.
Richard Graham handed the letter over to the Chancellor and reiterated the main point that ‘while government policy has protected the incomes of schools and universities, colleges have been dealt an average funding cut of 30% over the last ten years. The Chancellor’s departmental spending review is a chance to announce an above inflation increase which would boost skills, productivity and social mobility.’
Accompanying Richard on his call was Gloucestershire College Principal Matthew Burgess who stressed several issues, including the additional costs of teachers’ pensions.
Nic Dakin said ‘From my years as a college principal, I know how important this issue is. Our colleges are the engines of social mobility, transforming the prospects of our young people and delivering the skills our local businesses want. It is vital that the Government invests in our colleges.’
The Association of Colleges, Chief Executive, David Hughes noted that ‘There is now very strong cross-Party support for the 2.2 million people who study and train in FE colleges each year. It’s vital the government helps those tasked with helping to solve the skills gap.’
Journalists can contact Richard on 020 7219 7077 or Nic on 020 7219 0446.