Thursday, January 13, 2011

Russell promises UK students that (he will do his best to make sure) they receive same rights as their counterparts from the rest of the EU

Sort of...

In the light of the recent tuition fees furore (here and here), this is an interesting development:
The cost of European students studying in Scotland has quadrupled in nearly a decade, with the Holyrood government having to pick up the bill.

A record number of EU students, 15,930, are now attending Scots institutions, costing the taxpayer £75m a year.

Education Secretary Mike Russell is seeking an end to what is seen as a cheap option for Europeans who would have to pay for education at home.

He said the funding loophole was "no longer tenable".

The latest figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency show that, between 2008-09 and 2009-10, the number of EU students increased by 17%, from 13,585 to 15,930.
Ultimately, it's not just the Scottish taxpayer who is coughing up on this one but it is good to see Russell acknowledging the hard reality. It would have been nice to see him also acknowledge the present unfairness of a Scottish system towards students from the rest of the UK.... but if this EU anomaly is sorted out, then at least it will be a start.


subrosa said...

You've lost me a wee bit there. The money comes out of the Scottish budget. Where do you think it comes from?

O'Neill said...

How does it find itself in the Scottish budget in the first place, solely out of the Scottish taxpayer's pocket?

sm753 said...

Er, O'N, I'm afraid your headline that "Weasel" Russell is "promising" anything is misguided.

All he is doing is "seeking" to change it.

In Weasel-speak, this just means he is setting up an excuse so that when the EU says no, he can turn round and say "See? I tried. Not my fault we are being forced to discriminate against non-Scottish Brits. ."

O'Neill said...

You have a point, although the "sort of" at the beginning sort of covered it!

Changed the title anyway.

Interesting he doesn't mention the fairness aspect though...