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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5O-02225: Bill Bowman (North East Scotland)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 6 June 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what its position is on 10,000 fewer students being enrolled at Dundee and Angus College compared with 2006, representing a 38% drop.

Answered by: Shirley-Anne Somerville 13 June 2018

Headcount at Dundee and Angus College has reduced since 2006 primarily because the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) de-prioritised short courses (often around 5 hours) many of which did not lead to a recognised FE or HE qualification, nor increase employability or progression to further or higher learning. Short courses that do lead to a recognised qualification and on to work or progression are still funded.

Headcount figures at colleges are therefore not a reliable indicator of impactful college activity. Full-time equivalent (FTE) numbers are a better reflection of college activity and provide a more accurate picture over the time-series.

Dundee and Angus College’s FTE numbers have remained relatively stable over this time-series, with a reduction of only 378 FTE; while the SFC have ensured the College can continue delivering impactful learning by increasing its core teaching funding allocation to over
‎ £27 million in 2018-19, an increase of 9.3% on the previous year.