Luton MPs back Raise the Rate campaign

MP Kelvin Hopkins and MP Gavin Shuker are supporting the Raise the Rate campaign
MP Kelvin Hopkins and MP Gavin Shuker are supporting the Raise the Rate campaign

MP Gavin Shuker and MP Kelvin Hopkins are supporting a campaign to increase funding for Sixth Form students.

They attended a meeting inWestminster on Tuesday, October 30, to meet with representatives from the Sixth Form Colleges Association, who are co-ordinating the Raise the Rate campaign.

The campaign is backed by 12 associations that represent school and college leaders, governors, students and teachers in England, it aims to increase the funding rate for sixth form students that has been frozen at £4,000 per student, per year since 2013.

Gavin Shuker, MP for Luton South, said: “The government must increase funding for Luton’s sixth forms because the current levels are just not enough. We’ve basically seen a freeze in funding over the last four to five years, and that’s having a real impact on the quality of support and teaching available to our young people.”

The national campaign uses research from London Economics to press for a £760 per student increase to sixth form funding that is raised in line with inflation each year.

The increase is described as the “minimum required” to increase student support services to the required level, protect minority subjects that are at risk of being dropped, increase work experience opportunities and university visits.

Kelvin Hopkins, MP for Luton North, said: “Sixth Form Colleges do a superb job in educating 16-18 year olds but are seriously under-funded with year on year real terms financial cuts being inflicted on them. This is a crucial age group in our education system who are being massively short changed and denied opportunities to study subjects of their choice because of the government’s funding cuts.”