Plaid Cymru MS and Shadow Economy Minister Helen Mary Jones noted that the funding announcement from the Welsh Government lacks clarity, and shares concerns with NUS Wales and College Wales that the money will not go far enough in supporting institutions and students.
Ms Jones also noted that the Welsh Government must clarify whether they would impose conditions on the funding like the Westminster Government has done in England, calling such a move “troubling”.
Plaid Cymru Shadow Economy Minister Helen Mary Jones said,
“Whilst funding for higher and further education institutions in Wales is welcome, it isn’t clear whether this money is new, or whether it is repackaged from previous education budgets.
“This announcement is long overdue and yet will not go far enough. For example, the £15 million set aside for further education will be insufficient in covering the £30-40 million cost that Colleges Wales estimates is needed for new, socially distanced teaching methods.
“I share the concerns of NUS Wales that there isn’t support for students facing hardships, such as those who have already committed to contracts with landlords, but whose course will be delivered digitally, rendering student accommodation unnecessary.
“Further clarity is needed on where this money has come from, when it will appear, and whether there will be any strings attached, such as with the conditional funding available to English higher and further education institutions – a move which would be very troubling.”