Maria Caulfield MP has called for an increase in funding for colleges in a joint letter sent to the Chancellor by 165 MPs.
The letter, which was organised by Conservative Richard Graham MP and Labour MP Nic Dakin, has cross party support from four political parties across the chamber. The letter calls on the Chancellor to increase further education spending for colleges by an above inflation amount to take into account the average funding cut of 30% over the last ten years and increased costs over this time.
Maria Caulfield MP said “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. 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 said “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.”