Kirsty Williams, MS, Minister for Education
In my higher education policy statement of 4 May I proposed the need for admissions constraint in the Welsh higher education sector. My proposal was set in the context of higher education admissions being a UK wide issue which required a co-ordinated approach across the four nations for the 2020/21 academic year.
The Welsh Government’s priority is to ensure that all suitably qualified Welsh domiciled full-time undergraduate applicants are able to enter higher education in the 2020/21 academic year. I am also keen that we build on our recent success in more entering higher education through part-time study and increased progression onto post-graduate study. I want to provide opportunities in Wales for young people to progress with their education and to avoid becoming NEET and opportunities at higher education level for displaced workers to upskill and reskill. I also want to maximise Welsh institutions’ capacity to recruit new students in light of the UK Government’s new restrictions on English domiciled applicants, building on the HE sector’s wider role in supporting learners as informed and engaged citizens.
I have today written to HEFCW to ask the Council to take the steps it deems to be necessary to achieve stability in the higher education Welsh sector without adversely impacting on the opportunities available to study in Wales.
This statement is being issued during recess in order to keep members informed. Should Members wish me to make a further statement or to answer questions on this when the Senedd returns I would be happy to do so.