University Education: Covid-19

Education – in the House of Commons on 12th October 2020.

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Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Minister of State (Education)

We are working across Government and closely with the higher education sector to provide both practical and financial support through the covid-19 outbreak. This includes publishing reopening guidance to universities informed by SAGE advice, lifting caps on domestic medicine and dentistry causes for 2020-21, and providing both additional capital and teaching grant funding.

Photo of Ben Lake Ben Lake Shadow PC Spokesperson (Treasury), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Education), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Digital, Culture, Media & Sport), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Health and Social Care), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Housing, Communities & Local Government), Shadow PC Spokesperson (The Constitution and Welsh Affairs)

I thank the Minister for her response. She may be aware of concerns that the impact of the covid pandemic on the student experience will see higher non-completion rates, despite the best efforts of students and staff to continue teaching and learning throughout the outbreak. If non-completion rates were to increase, would the Government consider allocating additional financial support to universities to help cover the costs of non-completion?

Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Minister of State (Education)

We have a taskforce that meets weekly, and non-completion is something we have discussed. It is imperative that we support students to continue and complete their courses, and that we unlock their future potential and opportunities. This Government are determined to stand by them and ensure that happens.