SHADOW Minister for Education, Angela Burns AM, has commented on reports the Welsh Labour Government has reneged on its pledge to maintain a hardship fund for university students, she said:

“After committing billions of pounds to subsidise every university student from Wales regardless of their financial situation, it would seem strange to cut funding for students from poorer backgrounds.

“Everyone should have access to an excellent university education if they get the grades, but Labour’s U-turn on hardship funds could deter students from deprived communities from applying to university.

“Labour’s tuition fee subsidy, which diverts cash from Welsh universities, together with these hardship fund cuts, threatens both standards and the drive to improve access.

“It would appear that Labour’s pledge to widen access to higher education is now in tatters.”