Deep disappointment around college funding changes
The Scottish Government has confirmed that £26 million announced for colleges in the 2023-24 Budget will no longer be coming to the college sector.
Shona Struthers, CEO of Colleges Scotland, said: “Colleges are deeply disappointed and dismayed by this U-turn from the Scottish Government. Removing the equivalent of £1million from each college is completely inexplicable – colleges are already cash strapped, making cuts to courses and winding down parts of their offer due to a lack of funding, not a lack of ambition from colleges or demand from students or employers.
“Since December last year, numerous Ministers and Cabinet Secretaries have repeatedly assured the college sector and Scottish Parliament that this funding was coming in 2023-24. Yet, less than five months on from the government’s budget announcement, this promised money has now been withdrawn.
“Ministers are relying on colleges to provide hundreds of thousands of students with training and education each year but with less and less funding - it simply can’t be done any more. Colleges are needed more than ever to mitigate poverty in communities across the country, provide life-changing opportunities for people, and create the future workforce which will tackle the climate emergency. Removing funding previously planned for colleges is the wrong approach in delivering any of these ambitions.”