Let's get one thing straight before I type another word. I have no criticism of the policy adopted by the National Assembly Government towards the funding of post 18 education. None at all. It's very different from the policy adopted by the UK Government in respect of England. That's devolution in action. But what has surprised me is that there has been almost no conjecture about what the consequences might be of the 'Welsh' policy. If it was possible to do what the Assembly Government has done, without any consequences whatsoever, it would be hard to justify anything different.
Anyway, my ear and attention has been alerted to today's news that the board of Uwic has voted to close six of its courses, make 35 staff redundant, and reduce student numbers. Is there any connection I ponder. The reporting of this has referred to similar pressures on universities across Britain but there was one aspect of the BBC report that particularly interested me. It was a quote from Professor Deian Hopkin, a much respected former vice-chancellor of two universities. He is quoted as saying "They (the Assembly Government) are now saying that they've (the universities) got to try to adjust the whole package to suit a very important financial provision they've made for students". Now, what can that mean? Bearing in mind the huge public interest there has been in the differing approaches towards paying for Further Education in the different parts of the UK, I anticipate that there will be more interest in the differing consequences over the period leading up to the Assembly election - if there are any consequences that is.