NUS-USI student movement has said that the tertiary education funding review chaired by Dr Philip Augar highlights the need for more funding for further education and student support. NUS-USI President Olivia Potter-Hughes said that it is crucial that Northern Ireland moves to increase funding for student support and further education colleges to tackle inequality and create hope for the future.
Olivia Potter-Hughes stated: “This review highlights the need for increased investment in further education colleges. NUS-USI has long said that it is crucial that additional funding is delivered for further education to help maintain quality and increase the number of course and apprenticeship places here.
“NUS-USI wants to see free education and we will continue to work deliver an end to tuition fees to help address barriers to higher education. Any changes must not result in a decrease in overall budgets for any institutions here.
“The review also points to the need to improve student support. It is fundamental that it is important that student support funding increases in Northern Ireland to help widen access and participation in further and higher education, and to improve the quality of students’ lives.
“It is important that any increased funding for the Northern Ireland block grant, through the Barnett consequentials, as a result of any changes coming from this review are invested into tertiary education and student support here. The education system is in crisis and cannot be ignored any longer.”