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General Chat Thread, Major Education Cutbacks on the way :( in General; Thousands of jobs to go at universities as budgets slashed by 150m - Times Online Expect this to be the ...
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    somabc's Avatar
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    Major Education Cutbacks on the way :(

    Thousands of jobs to go at universities as budgets slashed by 150m - Times Online

    Expect this to be the start of public sector cuts, are schools next?

    Thousands of jobs to go at universities as budgets slashed by 150m

    Universities are expected to shed thousands more jobs and cut back on teaching equipment after next year’s budgets were slashed by up to 150 million, The Times has learnt.

    The scope of the cuts, which will enrage university vice-chancellors, is the first sign of how the Government’s attempt to claw back 15 billion in the next four years will affect services.

    The cuts will make it harder for the 130 universities in England, which receive annual state funding of 8 billion a year, to meet the Government’s target of getting half of all young adults into higher education by 2010.

    John Denham, the Skills Secretary, will warn university and further education chiefs in a letter today that they will have to find savings of 300 million — the lion’s share of a 400 million cut across his department next year.

    The cutback is a result of Alistair Darling’s decision to reduce public spending next year by 5 billion.
    Mr Denham will also make clear that inflation at minus 0.4 per cent should be taken into account in pay settlements, given the relatively generous 2.5 per cent rise in funding this year.

    But his intervention will infuriate unions. They are threatening action over a 0.3 per cent pay offer for nearly 200,000 university lecturers after putting forward an 8 per cent pay claim this year.

    The 120,000 college teachers and lecturers have demanded a 6 per cent pay rise for this year with a meeting scheduled with employers next Wednesday.

    Sally Hunt, general secretary of the University and College Union, said last night: “These cuts will be a disaster for education and any government plans to use education as a driver for recovery.” The union claimed that 100 universities have admitted they are already shedding jobs.

    Vice-chancellors are reeling from an enforced reduction in the number of extra student places they can offer this year from 15,000 to 10,000.

    One vice-chancellor of a leading institution described the cuts last night as “nonsensical”, adding that he was having to cut 250 staff before the cuts kick in next financial year. He knew of another top university planning to cut 300 jobs.

    The nine education quangos including Ofsted, the schools’ inspectorate, will also be told to shave 100 million off their 590 million budget, which is likely to result in hundreds more job cuts. They have 4,000 staff. Mr Denham told The Times that he was looking at a radical slimming of quangos as part of savings.

    “Next year the [higher education and further education budgets will rise again but as the nation tightens its belt in tough times it is right to ensure we are being as efficient as we can be,” said Mr Denham. “That’s why I will be writing to both the Higher Education Funding Council for England and the Learning Skills Council, asking them to ensure we get the best return for taxpayers’ money, by cutting back on bureaucracy, inefficiencies and administrative overheads, and by concentrating spending on teaching and learning.”
    Last edited by somabc; 7th May 2009 at 02:23 PM.

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    contink's Avatar
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    .. and yet we're paying how much again, for National ID cards that won't work anyway...

    The mind just plain boggles...

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    somabc's Avatar
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    Also in the FT, public spending faces 2.3% real cuts across the board for 3 years, then 0.1% increase for 2 years and 0.5% increase for 4 years. That is effective stagnation of investment in the public sector and in public sector wages until 2020. Effectively 2009 is shaping up to be worse than 1979, this would make the Thatcher early 80's cuts look like a walk in the park. Basically any increase in revenue for the government in increased taxes or from a growing economy will be swallowed by crippling interest and debt repayment.

    FT.com / Columnists / Martin Wolf - Tackling Britain?s fiscal debacle

    In 2010, according to the European Commission’s latest forecasts, the UK government will be spending 52.4 per cent of gross domestic product and receiving just 38.7 per cent of GDP in revenue. It will, as a result, have a gigantic general government deficit of 13.8 per cent of GDP. Worse, the UK’s cyclically-adjusted deficit will be 12.2 per cent of GDP. These are numbers one would expect in a time of war.

    Government spending will have to be cut down to size. According to the IFS, the government has pencilled in the tightest spending plans over a seven-year period since April 1985 to March 1992: a 0.1 per cent annual average real increase from 2011-12 to 2013-14, followed by a possible 0.5 per cent annual real increase in current spending for a further four years. This is the least that has to be achieved, given the dire starting position. In effect, government spending may have to be stagnant in real terms for almost two successive parliaments.

    That is what happens to a country that has not only spent freely, but now finds itself far poorer than it had hoped. It is clear what this must mean: a sustained freeze on the pay bill; decentralised pay bargaining; employee contributions to public pensions; and a pruning of benefits. It is obvious, too, that this will mean massive and painful conflict between governments and public workers.

    Hitherto, the vastly increased levels of government borrowing have concealed the true extent of this crisis. But these deficits will have to be eliminated. The bulk of the action will have to come from control over public spending. The next prime minister is likely to end up quite as hated as Margaret Thatcher was. But, as she liked to say, there is no alternative. The unsustainable cannot endure. If UK policymakers do not take the needed decisions willingly, markets will force them upon them.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Major Education Cutbacks on the way :(-public_spending.pdf   Major Education Cutbacks on the way :(-publication15048_en.pdf  
    Last edited by somabc; 8th May 2009 at 08:40 PM.

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    There's already bother over the LSC funding - we've had a cut of nearly 90,000, apparently.

    Unfortunately, the first staff to be shown the door / have their hours cut are those of us on temporary / variable contracts... meanwhile the finance manager continues to argue that she deserves a bigger pay packet, and money is spent on frivolous tat.

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    The shortfall in LSC funding in 14-19 has been patched in the budget. There are no plans at the moment to cut funds at secondary or primary but the major spends in these areas are capital spends under BSF, PCP and academies. Nothing for more teachers or associate staff, nothing for extra training programs and nothing extra for technology grants other than what is already around.

    There is the possibility that as the Digital Britain stuff rolls out it will enable more exchanges to allow schools to have cheaper connections but most LAs / RBCs will absorb this and use the funds to develop further resources.

    The best move for schools to get more funds are to gain additional specialisms for secondary schools or to fail.

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