Spending review announced in Parliament | Redbrick | University of Birmingham

Spending review announced in Parliament

George Osbourne reveals where the budget cuts are going to be made George Osborne described Wednesday’s Government spending review as ‘the hard road to a better future,...

George Osbourne reveals where the budget cuts are going to be made

George Osborne described Wednesday's Government spending review as 'the hard road to a better future,' saying that it would provide 'a stronger Britain for all.'

Statistics show that 490,000 public sector jobs are likely to be lost, with an average of 19 per cent cuts in departmental budgets over the four year period. This includes the Home Office, which will be cut by 23 per cent over the four years, defence which will be cut by 80 per cent and welfare by up to £7 billion.

The spending review states that it is a priority to secure economic stability at a time of continuing uncertainty in the global economy. There was little mention of matters that will affect students in higher education.

NUS President Aaron Porter predicts that the cuts will lead to 'the effective privatisation of universities' and restrict the opportunities of students. He adds that this is a spending review that looks an entire generation in the eye and says 'You're on your own.'

As a whole education will have a 3.4 per cent cut in spending. However universities will have to suffer more cuts than any other educational establishment. Excluding research, funding will be reduced by 40 per cent, from £7.1 billion to £4.2 billion, and for those aged 19 and over, funding is going to be cut by 25 per cent — a reduction of £1.1 billion. Particularly at risk are humanities subjects as the government will be prioritising science and technology subjects.

Osborne announced that the government will be investing in adult apprenticeships with a plan to have 75,000 more people in training by the end of the four year period. Those wanting to pursue a university education could be left with tuition fee debts of up to £7000 a year, reflecting the recommendations of last week's Browne Review.

Positive outcomes that have emerged from the review include £530 million will be spent on bringing super fast broadband to rural areas and the promised £9.3 billion provision will remain for the Olympics Games in 2012. Also the NHS and the English schools budget have remained protected with the NHS budget rising every year till 2015.

Political parties remain divided on the spending cuts. Former Chancellor Alastair Darling, calling the review a piece of 'political sophistry' that has deceived the whole country.

Reporters Laura Frost and Freddie Herzog



Published

22nd October 2010 at 6:27 am



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