Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The farce of “Scottish” University funding continues, Scots don’t run their own universities, explains why poorer Scots shut out

Dear All

No sooner have the Lib Dems got their feet under the UK Government table than they have abandoned their principles.

Ex Labour Councillor now Lib Dem UK Business Secretary Vince Cable is saying that Scotland will have to abandon free university education for home students.

He wants to charge graduates and use the market model similar to the one being proposed for England.

Encroaching into devolved politics isn’t a good idea at the best of times and this issue is a hot potato.

In Scotland there is much talk about a “Scottish solution” which is code for another method of jacking money off the student to make it seem palatable to the public.

It isn’t and it won’t be!

Another issue is that this will further create problems for the poorest in society and widen the gap between the rich and poor.

But to be clear the poorest taxpayers will end up funding the rich while their kids are effectively barred from the same life chances.

Down south there is talk about a new annual fee level of £7000 a year for students and at present Cable and Co are throwing their lot behind former BP chief Lord Browne who has done a review.

Remember all the talk about the cap staying capped?

And who wants to start working life with an average graduate debt which might total £30,000?

Is there a solution?

Yes, currently there are too many universities in Scotland; it is time to consider the closure option.

Entire in whole or in part!

The removal of the Scottish Funding Council which is controlled by vested interests in favour of the older institutions.

End the culture of university staff greed regarding excessive salaries and expenses.

Boost the College Sector which provides better value for money.

If The Browne review is pushed through in its entirety then the knock-on effect in Scotland because of the Barnett Formula means a loss of cash to the tune of £400 million.

Politicians continually talk about “Scottish education” with regard to the university sector but the reality is, it isn’t very Scottish.

Glasgow, St Andrews, Dundee, Aberdeen and Edinburgh are all run by people who are not Scottish.

The only thing “Scottish” about university education in Scotland is the location of their campus.

And there is a disturbing lack of Scottish working class people in senior university positions.

One thing for certain, the fate of “Scottish” education won’t be decided by Scottish people.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

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