Bourne: WAG refuses to accept reality of higher education challenges

Welsh Conservatives today confronted the Assembly Government over its position on higher education in Wales.

Leader of the Opposition Nick Bourne AM challenged the First Minister in the Assembly Chamber over potential changes to the funding and structure of higher education.

Commenting on the exchange, Mr Bourne said:

“We all know that we need to get more for less across Government and there is significant ongoing concern over tuition fees and the cost of higher education in Wales.

“The First Minister conceded that it is inevitable that our universities need to grow but would not be drawn on whether the Assembly Government favoured further mergers amongst Welsh institutions.

“Mergers between higher education institutions can enhance the student experience if done for the right reasons, but they should not be seen as a potential way of saving money now that resources are tight.

“We cannot hope to maintain competitive levels of achievement with other countries if we do not have a robustly funded higher education sector.

“Yet again, the First Minister has refused to face up to the reality of the challenges facing our Higher Education sector.”