Commenting on the Government's response to the Innovation, Universities, Science & Skills Committee's report on funding cuts for students undertaking equivalent or lower qualifications (ELQs), NUS President Wes Streeting said:
Breathtaking arrogance by the Government
"The Government is guilty of breathtaking arrogance. It rushed through this damaging policy without any meaningful consultation.
And has now completely disregarded the overwhelming objections from across the entire higher education sector, on which the advice of the Select Committee was based."
Pitting one group of students against another
"The Government’s claim that 20,000 students would not be supported without this redistribution of £100 million is a wrong-headed attempt to pit one group of students against another, relying on unsupported assertion rather than clear evidence."
Not providing any written evidence to its enquiry
"Indeed, the Committee specifically criticised the Government for not providing any written evidence to its inquiry or carrying out consultation before pursuing this policy.
The Government's response is an insult to almost 500 written submissions to the Committee from institutions, organisations and individuals - almost every single one of which was critical of this policy."
Future ELQ funding should be addressed
"NUS agrees with the Committee that future questions about ELQ funding should be addressed by the major Government review of fees and funding policy in 2009."
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