Funding for higher education is falling under Nicola Sturgeon

Funding for higher education has continued to fall under Nicola Sturgeon, despite promises that education would be the driving and defining priority of her government.

A briefing produced by the impartial experts at the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) this week shows that revenue funding for higher education institutions is now £11 million less in real terms than it was when the SNP came to power in 2007, and has continued to fall since Nicola Sturgeon became First Minister.

This research follows a summer report from Audit Scotland which shows that higher education has faced a 6% cut in real terms since 2010. The Audit Scotland report says that funding will continue to fall under Nicola Sturgeon, saying “Overall funding for universities has reduced in recent years, and will continue to do so through 2016/17.”

This week, the convener of Universities Scotland, Andrea Nolan, told the Scottish Parliament Education Committee that the sector cannot go on with the current levels of underfunding.

Labour will continue to make the case that the education budget should be protected by using the tax powers of the Scottish Parliament.

Scottish Labour Education spokesperson Iain Gray MSP said:

“Time and again the SNP tell us that education is their top priority, only for the reality of their record to tell us the opposite.

Scotland’s universities should be the envy of the world and the engines of long term growth in our economy but they have faced cuts ever since the SNP came to power.

Nicola Surgeon has a brass neck to claim that education is her top priority whilst presiding over cuts to universities, colleges and schools.

Labour would protect the education budget and the funding for our universities using the new tax powers of our Scottish Parliament and will continue to make that case.

The SNP face a choice, they can work with Labour to stop the cuts and invest in education, or they can collude with the Tories and carry on the cuts.”

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25 thoughts on “Funding for higher education is falling under Nicola Sturgeon

  1. Yet another magic money tree promise from the man who asked where we would get the money from for a “oil fund”.

    1. No magic money tree required. Labour fought the last election on a plan for progressive taxation which would have prevented the massive cuts the SNP is imposing on public services. The SNP rejected that plan and chose to vote with the Tories to stop it happening.

      Labour is the progressive alternative focused on investment in quality public services and education in order to grow our economy. The SNP oppose progressive politics in Scotland.

      1. This progressive taxation would be the increase in income tax and council tax for the lower paid, that labour had rejected by the voters in this country, in fact it was rejected by a considerable margin, relegating your party to third place.

        The SNP did not reject labours increase in taxes, the country rejected it, the country does not just reject labours half-assed policy, they do not trust anything labour proposes.

        Their is a reason labour has only 1 MP and 24 MSPs in Scotland, labour opposes Scotland, and is well know for voting with the Tories to do that.

        1. Labour’s tax policy would not have reduced the take home pay of a single low paid worker. Stop spinning SNP lines and acknowledge that the party you support opted not to tax the rich to pay for decent services, and in doing so was backed up by the Tories.

          1. Yep Duncan, everyone in the country believed in labours tax policy, that’s why you did so well in the election last May.

            How many times were labour spending the non-existent APD money during the last election campaign ???

            In fact I believe every policy labour put forward in the last election had its funding layout trashed by every other political party, usually within a matter of hours.

            Polices from labour are nought more than chitchat, never any substance, never any real use.

          2. That’s an easy way to avoid the point, Davy, but I’m not buying it. The party YOU supported is cutting taxes for the rich, not just refusing to increase taxes for the rich, and in both cases getting support from the Tories, and as a result is cutting spending on education and local government and god knows what else, and you are trying to lecture Labour on our tax plans? You are shameless.

            The SNP has chosen the low tax, low spending approach of Osbornomics, but has sold it to you as progressive. And you won’t challenge it because all you really want is independence, and the SNP are the key to that.

          3. Labour want to put 1p onto everybodies tax in what universe would that leave out the low paid worker?

          4. Not to mention the fact that Labour want to increase the council tax of low paid workers on top. In what universe would that not cut into their low pay packets?

          5. Not true. Labour wants to replace the council tax. Just like the SNP said they would do in 2007 (didn’t) and in 2011 (didn’t again). Still, I’m sure the SNP breaking those promises will be lauded by you as them “standing up for Scotland”, right?

  2. Could we have a calculation of the total of extra spending proposed by Scottish Labour in all areas, and the levels of taxation required to meet those commitments.
    I would remind Labour that real incomes per household have dropped over the last decade due to low wage rises and inflation. We are not all on the protected incomes of politicians who appear able to live off expenses and bank their wages.

  3. Na na Duncan, your not getting off with that one, the labour are the party that voted with the Tories for austerity, labour also did not vote against Osbourne’s budget.

    Did you honestly think anyone has forgotten labours record of voting either for Tory policies or abstaining from voting against them, because no-one has, apart fa yersel.

    And the only party that is cutting taxes for the rich is the Tories, and the only party not opposing them doing it, is the official opposition LABOUR.

    Smirk your way out of that if you want, it will make no difference, Scotland has seen through labour, even your financial support is vanishing.

    Labour is now the fairy-tale party of Scottish politics.

    1. So now you’ve entered into the outright lie territory. Labour voted against Osborne’s budget. The Hansard record of the vote is right here:

      The SNP cuts taxes for the rich every year by freezing the Council Tax. It also refused to reinstate the 50p tax for the ultra rich. And it is cutting APD which is a measure that will massively favour the rich over the poor.

      I’m not smirking. I’m angry. Angry that you and so many people like you have chosen to believe and regurgitate lies.

      1. The only liar in this exchange is yersel, your sudo pretend anger is just that, pretence.

        The freeze on council tax has benefitted everyone, l know because I have to pay it. The 50p tax for the ultra rich could cost Scotland in tax not the same thing as labours fantasy increase in figures.

        And of course cutting APD only benefits the rich in labours narrow world, the ordinary working man and woman who works and saves over the year or a number of years to afford a holiday abroad does not deserve a break in their APD.

        The increase in visitor tourism from a reduction in APD would of course be a welcome boost to all the people who work in that Industry, apart from those in labours world where it would be a disaster.

        Don’t forget how a reduction in APD is expected to benefit the whole of Scotlands economy, apart from in labours world, when anything that can be a benefit to Scotland is wrong.

        Keep pretending to be angry Duncan, it means as much as a labour policy..

        1. The council tax freeze benefits the richest the most.

          The excuse that the 50p tax could lose revenues was exposed after the election as a fiction.

          Halving APD disproportionately benefits the richest, damages the climate and takes money from essential services.

          No pretence about my anger.

          1. Labour-run Glasgow council was the first to freeze council taxes.
            Labour stood at the last election on a council tax freeze ticket.

            Don’t you ever get tired of this waffle, Dunc?

          2. And what does that have to do with the point, Gavin? You think “another boy said he would do it too” is an excuse? You think that gives you a free pass to ignore the evidence I’ve presented that the SNP’s policies are not progressive? The SNP are in power. You are defending them. So defend their Tory-backed tax cutting.

          3. So its less damaging to the climate to drive hundreds of miles,down to England, to catch a cheaper flight there, than fly from Scotland, Dunc?

            Or are higher fares in Scotland a “price worth paying” for Labour hypocrisy?

          4. And labours solution is to increase income tax and council tax for those least able to pay it.

            And having the highest APD in the whole of the UK is such a benefit to Scotland, well it is in labours world.

            Thank the Lord the rest of Scotland does not believe what you and labour says, as witnessed by the results in the last couple of elections.

            At least Scotland has a government that believes in both the country and its people, which is something no-one will ever be able to accuse labour of.

            Keep kowtowing to your London masters, its all your good for.

          5. That’s just not true. Labour’s tax plans explicitly protect those least able to pay, and are explicitly progressive meaning those who earn most pay most. It doesn’t matter how often you repeat the SNP spin – Nicola opposed progressive taxation, and in doing so was backed up by the Tories in the Scottish Parliament.

          6. Duncan, Duncan—-I am not a member of the SNP—-you seem to think if someone criticizes Labour its because they are leagued with the “Devil”( this counts only as the SNP as Labour/Tories/LibDumbs are handcuffed together in opposition at Holyrood, and in cahoots at Westminster).

            However its my view that the ordinary Joe Public cannot afford to fund Labours uncosted spend, spend, spend program.
            After a decade of low wage rises, people have not got spare cash to hand out to Glasgow Cooncil et al to spend on fripperies and chains of office for Bailies/cars wi’ drivers etc. Its time for these lot to cut their cloth for a change—though they will be gone next year anyway. Though Glasgow council is in a terrible state due to its decades of incompetent administration, its religious bias in recruitment and whoever gets it is in for a shock.

            I also believe Scotland should be self governing, as did Keir Hardie, but that’s another story.

          7. Duncan, its not that “another boy said he would do it”——-Labour DID do a council tax freeze, in Glasgow, and Labour stated in their Manifesto they WOULD do a council tax freeze all across Scotland.

          8. I posted evidence to support all of these claims. They show categorically that the SNP is not progressive, and Labour is. All you seem able to do is try to divert.

            • The council tax freeze benefits the richest the most.
            • The excuse that the 50p tax could lose revenues was exposed after the election as a fiction.
            • Halving APD disproportionately benefits the richest, damages the climate and takes money from essential services.
          9. If you had any real actual evidence instead of Labour party claims made via the media then you would have produced that instead of the worthless and discredited.
            So unless you have Real Evidence from real and reliable sources its all just piss and wind.
            As usual.

  4. And why does no-one believe Duncan’s evidence, because like most labour policy’s the ‘truth is way way way out there’.

  5. “Not true. Labour wants to replace the council tax. Just like the SNP said they would do in 2007 (didn’t) and in 2011 (didn’t again). Still, I’m sure the SNP breaking those promises will be lauded by you as them “standing up for Scotland”, right?”

    Labour in theory want to do whatever they think will get them elected then they will do the exact opposite if they are. That’s not me being critical that’s me highlighting Labours past record in and out of Government.
    I am also disappointed with the SNPs attitude to the council tax its the first time they’ve let me down. They should have made abolishing it a priority.
    I wanted to see LIT introduced but perhaps it wouldn’t have raised enough local taxation to cover the expenditure? Perhaps it costs too much to implement after the UK Government cuts to the Scottish budget. I don’t know. But I trust the Scottish Government to know and to have made the decision based on prudence not ideology.
    That’s the kind of trust they’ve built up with the people of Scotland who aren’t hard core pro unionist. The kind of trust Labour once had and lost. And it only grows everytime Labour or the Conservatives fail in another stupid smear attempt.
    If the opposition are reduced to mindless smear games and nitpicking trivialities then the Scottish Government must be getting it right.

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