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Student Places

Volume 12: debated on Monday 9 November 1981

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asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is the total number of student places to be lost in 1983, 1984 and 1985 and the expected annual cash savings for these years, excluding redundancy payments; and what is the expected number of redundancies and estimated cost of redundancy payments.

The University Grants Committee recently announced target student numbers, which were based on its allocations of recurrent grant for 1981–82 and its provisional indications of universities' grant for later years. These targets assumed that the total number of home and EC students in universities in Great Britain would fall to 248,700 by 1983–84 or 1984–85. This compares with a total of 267,500 such students in 1980–81.The Government's Expenditure Plans 1981–82 to 1983–84 (Cmnd. 8175) provide for a reduction in expenditure on higher education by 1983–84 of rather more than 8 per cent. below the level planned in Cmnd. 7841, and the continued withdrawal of the subsidy for overseas students will further reduce the total level of public expenditure on higher education.For planning purposes the University Grants Committee was asked to assume that the universities would bear a proportionate share of the reduction in funding for home students but no decisions have yet been taken about the precise allocation of the resources to universities in 1982–83 and later years. It is too early to say how many redundancies there will be or what they will cost.