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Southend lecturers say hands off EMA

South Essex College UCU (Southend Branch) | 03.12.2010 21:15 | Education | Public sector cuts

The South Essex College branch of the lecturers union UCU are campaigning to save the education maintenance allowance (EMA). The allowance is set to be cut by the coalition government in spending cuts and has been one of the focal points for recent student demonstrations across the country.

The campaigners will join the Southend Against the Cuts march in Southend at 1200 on Sunday December 12th to publicly voice their concerns, they will also take part in the national “Save EMA Day” on Monday 13th December speaking at the college to students, staff and members of the public as well as collecting signatures for a national petition.
The government has decided to make the cut because a study by the NFER study identified that 90% of the payments were ‘deadweight’ and students would have attended without the payments. The UCU contends that the study was unrepresentative of the majority of people who receive it, as it did not include any students from Further Education colleges who account for the majority of EMA recipients. In other studies the IFS concluded that the EMA increased the proportion of students staying on in full time education and a recent study by the NUS found that 61% of all recipients would be unable to continue in education without it.
Doug Rouxel, the Chair for the Southend Branch stated that “EMA plays a really important role in helping to support students through their education, ensuring that they gain essential skills which will help them to gain employment in the future.”
Many college principals up and down the country are concerned about the cutting of the EMA, when The UCU contacted Jan Hodges, Principal of South Essex College about the issue she stated she shared their concerns and had contacted local MPs about the issue.

South Essex College UCU (Southend Branch)
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  1. ..or if you prefer some direct action... — rue