Labour MP for Cambridge Daniel Zeichner has slammed the Chancellor’s announcement in today’s budget that University maintenance grants for lower income students in England and Wales will be scrapped from September 2016.
5,697 students at Anglia Ruskin University and 2,720 at the at University of Cambridge currently receive maintenance grants according to figures from the HEFCI.
The full grant is worth £3,387 a year for students from families with annual incomes of £25,000 or less.
Daniel Zeichner MP said: “In his budget, Mr Osborne said the grants had become “unaffordable”. I say, we can’t afford not to have them. I know from speaking to students first hand, the money these grants offer is often the difference between students getting to study in Cambridge or not. Scrapping them will hit the poorest hardest, risk putting university out of reach and so ultimately harm potential academic breakthroughs and risk future prosperity.
Slamming the door to University for thousands is not the answer to the economic or social problems Britain faces.”
Student, Rory Weal, studying at Queens’ College, Cambridge added: “Without maintenance grants, studying at Cambridge would have simply been unaffordable for myself and many of my peers. The government is lumbering low income students with yet more debt and pushing a good education out of reach for many.”