29 March 2012

Cuts in funding and places leave universities and students with no benefit from the 'market'

Commenting on today’s grant and student number allocations from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (Hefce), Professor Michael Driscoll, Vice-Chancellor of Middlesex University and interim chair of the university think tank million+, said: “These allocations show the true extent of the Coalition’s reform of fees and funding and the cutback in the overall number of university places being funded. Universities start receiving much less while graduates will pay more for their education in the future.

“This reduction in funding is being combined with a cut in funded numbers and the introduction of student number controls which have resulted in the overwhelming majority of universities losing student places. We are now in a bizarre situation that excellent universities will find it more difficult to innovate and respond to new and emerging areas. Instead of freeing up institutions and giving more choice to students, universities face more centralised control over numbers and fees. This is an extraordinary about turn for a Government which believes in the market.”

Notes to editors:

  1. million+ is a leading university think-tank, working to solve the complex problems in higher education www.millionplus.ac.uk. For more information please contact Victoria Mills on 0207 717 1659 or 07900 277819.
  2. Full details of the Recurrent grants and student number controls for 2012-13 (HEFCE 2012/08) are on the HEFCE website www.hefce.ac.uk.
  3. 31 universities will lose 10% or more of their student places for 2012-13 (compared to 2011-12).