The Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns AM, has highlighted figures showing a drop in overall enrolment between 2012/13 and’13/14, along with a significant fall in those enrolling from ‘deprived’ areas.
48,265 people registered for further education in Wales in the ‘12/13 academic year. That dropped to 47,030 12 months later.
Similarly, the total number of enrolments in further education fell from 174,925 in ‘12/13 to 167, 715 during the next year; a total drop of 7,210 students.
National Training Federation Wales recently criticised in-year Labour government cuts of over 10 million pounds to the apprenticeships budget, predicting:
8,857 (49%) fewer apprenticeship opportunities for the period August 1, 2014 to March 31, 2015, compared with the same period last year.
3,527 (32%) fewer opportunities in the Welsh Government’s “priority areas” of 16-24-year-old learners and Higher Apprenticeships.
Mrs Burns said:
“Labour must stop the decline before it’s too late.
“Such a significant fall in FE enrolment raises extremely serious questions, particularly within deprived areas.
“Labour claim they’re committed to closing the attainment gap – yet these figures confirm they’re failing spectacularly.
“It’s in deprived areas where the most significant support is required to encourage further education, advance skills and boost jobs growth.
“With cuts to further education and apprenticeships funding, it’s no surprise that Labour ministers have chosen to sweep these figures under the carpet.
“Since they took over the reins of our education system in 1999, standards have declined dramatically. Even Labour’s own First Minister has admitted his party took its eye off the ball.”
As if the literacy and numeracy of Welsh school children ranking 43rd out of 65 developed countries (PISA Report) isn’t bad enough and not to mention the fact that attainment levels in all core subjects are the lowest in the Home Nations (PISA).
So much for the propaganda myth that Welsh language medium schools are somehow superior to their English medium counterparts and this is in spite of preferential funding?
Carwyn and his Team Druid, are ruining the career prospects and ambitions of Welsh youth before they even start, albeit that £2.2 billion since 1982 for the Welsh language S4C (its own figure) that no-one watches is just dandy!