The Independent is reporting that funding for students in school sixth forms and colleges in England has been severely squeezed over the last eight years, a report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has found.
Courses have been closed, student support has been cut, and teaching provision has reduced as a result of the real-terms cuts to further education, education unions have warned.
Analysis from IFS has revealed that funding per student in sixth forms has fallen by more than a fifth (21 per cent) per student since 2010-11 – and it remains lower than at any point since 2002-03.
It finds that funding for adult education has been cut by 45 per cent since 2009-10, which has mostly been delivered through fewer adult learners taking qualifications at GCSE level or below.
By 2019-20, funding per young person in further education will be at about the same level as in 2006-07 – only 10 per cent higher than it was thirty years ago.
Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said: “Parents will be horrified to learn of the damage that has been done to sixth forms and colleges by severe real-terms cuts in government funding.”
Julian Gravatt, deputy chief executive of the Association of Colleges, said: “A decade of almost continuous cuts and constant attempts at reform has led to fewer adults in learning, less teaching hours for sixth-formers, and inevitably a growing population which is not acquiring the skills the country needs them to have to secure prosperity post-Brexit.”
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