The news that Bangor University are considering closing the School of Life Long Learning is of great concern to Arfon Assembly Member Siân Gwenllian and she has requested an emergency meeting with the University to discuss the matter.
‘Firstly, I would like to understand what will happen to the students that have already enrolled on courses at the School.
Secondly, I would like to understand the implications of closing the department for people in the area that wish to join the world of further education later in life or wish to study part-time to accommodate their living situations. I will be looking for certainty that people from the area that wish to study at a higher education level later in life do not miss out in light of any changes.
Thirdly, I would like an assurance that managers at the University have discussed any changes with staff at the School and have listened carefully to their opinions before reaching any decisions.
We live in an age where financial cuts are imposed on us in a completely merciless way by the Tories in Westminster which has implications for Universities and public services across Wales.
On top of this, the Welsh Labour Government has been under-investing in our nation’s universities – with Welsh universities receiving 23% less than their English counterparts.
Plaid Cymru has managed to ensure that no further cuts will be made to higher education in the 2017-18 budget but the situation continues to be very challenging. Added to this is the massive uncertainty created by the vote to leave the European Union.
Plaid Cymru believes that higher education is at the core of our country’s economic prosperity and if Plaid were in government higher education would be a priority and would receive fair funding’’.
Llyr Gruffydd AM (Plaid Cymru’s Shadow Secretary for Education) added -
“The news that the University intends to close the School of Lifelong Learning and two other course is worrying. Before the University goes any further they must conduct a full consultation with everyone associated with the School and its courses, after all the decision is likely to have a significant impact on students, staff, and the community.
I would also like to see the evidence underpinning the recommendations. I will contact the University to ask for this information and have a discussion about the recommendations as a matter of urgency".
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