Blackpool South MP backs call for more cash for colleges

Blackpool South MP and shadow skills minister Gordon Marsden
Blackpool South MP and shadow skills minister Gordon Marsden

Blackpool South MP and shadow skills minister Gordon Marsden is backing a Westminster debate for more funding for students at colleges aged 16 to 19.

The debate is being led by Labour colleague Nic Dakin MP and being backed by the Association of Colleges, which represents around 95 per cent of all colleges in England.

Research by the AOC found that when a young person reached the age of 16, funding dropped by around 25 per cent.

Mr Marsden said: “I know how important education and training is to young people in Blackpool. We have to make sure that young people at Blackpool Sixth Form and Blackpool and The Fylde College are provided with the support and guidance they need to succeed in their chosen career. There has been progress made but there is still more we can do.

“To ensure that the education and training 16 to 19-year- olds receive is high quality, the right investment is needed. At the moment, schools and colleges receive on average £4,531 per 16 to 18 year old student. This is compared to £5,751 for 11 to 16 students and £8,781 in the higher education sector.”

He said the students got 15 hours of teaching and support each week compared with students in Canada who get 26 hours or Shanghai 30.