Background: Women likely to be disproportionately affected by some of the changes in education funding. Women’s life time earnings are on average lower than men’s making it harder for women meet the increased costs of studying. Women also tend to be the primary carers for children so are disproportionately likely to be affected by cuts to school budgets.
- The grant received by Coventry from the Department for Education to pay for schools and colleges in Coventry has been cut by 24%
- Further education colleges are facing a 25% cut in funding
- Education maintenance allowance is being replaced by a bursary scheme and funding cut from £560 million to £180 million
- Funding for English language classes (ESOL) is being cut
- Tuition fees are set to raise. Fees at the University of Warwick will be £9000 a year. Fees at Coventry University will vary from between £7,500 and £9000 a year.
Impact: Cuts to the schools budget have resulted in a cut to services provided for special needs and mental health support in schools. This will affect some of the most vulnerable children in Coventry. [i]. It may disproportionately impact on women who tend to be the primary carers of children.
Cuts to further and higher education may
· Act as a barrier to women obtaining educational qualifications because of increased fees for higher education and reduced support for further education courses – particularly those who have children, are from poorer backgrounds, don’t speak English and/or are mature students.
· Have negative impacts on women in later life – Women who are unable to obtain educational qualifications as a result of increased fees and reduced support may see their earning potential and job prospects reduced as a result.
Read the full education chapter in Unravelling Equality here
[i] Coventry City Council, ‘Equality Impact Assessment on Adult Social Care 2011/12’ in Equality Impact Assessments on Budget Setting 2010/11 p.13 available at http://www.coventry.gov.uk/downloads/download/894/equality_impact_assessment [Accessed 21st April 2011]