Emily Chapman, Vice President (Further Education) responding to the EPI report
“For many years NUS campaign work, including FE Unplugged and the NUS Poverty Commission, has argued for improved funding for 16-19. This timely EPI report is further evidence that we need action. It identifies many issues in the funding of both providers and learners, not least that the value of learner support has fallen by a shocking 71% in real terms since 2010/11.
“This fall in support has come at a time of increased cost pressure on FE learners. Our work on transport as part of My FE Journey shows transport costs are another critical issue. Students suffer from costly, unreliable services on public transport such as buses, trains and trams. As most students receive no financial support, transport costs remain high on their list of concerns.
“There is a desperate need for investment in the FE sector, if the kind of radical growth in technical education that is envisioned can be realised. A strong, well-funded FE system is quite simply vital to secure our world-leading education sector.”