Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Why devolution stinks- Reason No.435

Prior to tomorrow's debate on the level of tuition fees, this from Wales:
THE tuition fee deal for Welsh students that has left commentators in England green with envy will be funded by cutting the general level of grant to universities in Wales, it has been confirmed.

But the Assembly Government said the reduction would be offset by increasing fees to students from England studying at Welsh universities.
As Cardiff Blogger points out here, if you are from anywhere else in the EU (apart from the UK) you, along with Welsh students, will be subsidised to study at Welsh universities. A nationalist explanation for that fact posted in his comments stated:
It would be nice if higher education was free to everyone… but when money is tight, I doubt that middle class teenagers from the leafy counties of England should be at the front of the queue.
Dear, oh dear.
Continuing with the somewhat more "sanitised" line:
A spokesman for the Assembly Government said: “We will pay for tuition fee grants or a waiver by top-slicing the Higher Education Funding Council teaching grant by around 35% by 2016-17.

“Additional income will also be available to Welsh (universities) via students from England paying the higher tuition fees to institutions in Wales.
The devolutionist would argue that Wales, N.Ireland and Scotland are given their own budget to spend as they wish. That then makes officially sanctioned discrimination based on ethnic grounds(see comments) where you happen to live morally justifiable?


Anonymous said...

There is no discrimination on ethnic grounds in the policy, the discrimination is on residence. A Welsh person resident in England will pay the fees at the level set for england, an English person resident in Wales will pay the fees at the level set for Wales.

Anonymous said...

My Assembly contacts tell me that's it's the domicile that determines policy. If Wales decide to subsidise "our" students then we have to if they study in Wales, Scotland, England or NI.Similarly for Scottish, Northern Irish and. with the usual UK consitutional twist, English. They think it's illegal to do otherwise.

Anonymous said...

No-one will be forcing English-domiciled students to study in Wales.

O'Neill said...

Anonymous 1 and Dewi,

"Residence" or "domicility"?

I've altered the post to reflect your point but the discrimination, bearing in mind the vast majority of those coming "from" England will be English is still the most relevant factor here I think.

Anonymous 2,

A person, irrespective of their ethnicity, colour, creed, sexual orientation, residence or whatever, should be permitted to study where they wish to- on the basis of a constitutional dog's dinner they shouldn't be discriminated in choosing Wales.

sm753 said...

This is now replicating the situation in Scotland.

You can get a degree from a Scottish university for free if you come from anywhere in the EU - other than England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

It is disgraceful, bigoted and crypto-racist, and the rampant hypocrisy of it all is illustrated by the fact that if Scotland were "independent" (and in the EU) it would not be allowed to have such a policy. It would have to be "fees for all" or "free for all", as it is everywhere else in the EU.

Anonymous said...

"they shouldn't be discriminated in choosing Wales"

They won't be. They'll be paying the same fees as they would pay in England.

O'Neill said...

Yet another anonymouse, am I really that scarey?;)

Anyway, you know exactly what I'm getting at, they shouldn't be discriminated relative to their fellow students from elsewhere in the EU who have also chosen Wales.

The Aberdonian said...

Er SM, English-domiciled students pay two thirds of the fee that they would pay if than if they were studying in England thanks to the Scottish goverment and the previous administration.

On the other hand Scotland-domiciled students studying in England pay the full fee charged. Who is subbing who?

By and by, the Crown Dependencies governments have pledged to pay most of the fee increase for their students studying in England.

And the Channel Islands and the IoM claim to be British. Such solidarity. Stick your head into them!