Planned Merger of Dundee and Angus Colleges Can't Distract from SNP Cuts in Further Education

1 August 2013 

Saving money by merging colleges like Dundee College with Angus College in November this year may sound fine on paper, but we know Audit Scotland is doubtful whether the estimated savings from college mergers will actually materialise.

I hope for the sake of students that they do, otherwise our college students will continue to pay the price for the sector being the poor cousin to the Universities under the SNP.

These mergers have been rushed through by the SNP in a desperate attempt to try to reduce the impact of their £50 million cut to the budgets of the Further Education Colleges throughout

The name of a college and its management structure are minor issues when compared to how our colleges serve their communities.

They now have far fewer places for adult learners and adults over 25 wanting to retrain full or part time.

College staffing numbers have been reduced along with courses, leaving many young Scots on waiting lists unable to get a place.

It is therefore understandable that Mike Russell MSP, the SNP's Cabinet Secretary for Education, wants to divert attention away from his college cuts.

Shiny new name plates and logos can’t disguise the dramatic cuts our further education sector has suffered.

Unfortunately, for many prospective students, a Further Education College is less likely now to provide the place to go to learn new skills and retrain.