Stop cuts to funding for disabled and dyslexic students

David Willets, the Minister for Universities and Science, has announced the "modernisation" of the government grant for students with disabilities, the Disabled Students Allowance (DSA). The initial detail of this modernisation is a series of cuts in provision, placing the funding burden on Universities and individual students.

We believe that these cuts could:

· Reduce access to higher education for students with disabilities and dyslexia

· Reduce successful outcomes with less support meaning lower degree classifications for students who require additional support

· Reduce the employment prospects for graduates with disabilities and dyslexia

· Increase the drop out/failure rate in universities amongst disabled and dyslexic students

· Lead to further inequality within society.

There is a driving campaign to get the government to change their minds and be more responsible in relation to the Disabled Students Allowance (DSA), which has led to Rod Fidler starting an e-petition (http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/63748) which has gained 18 043 signatures and a response from the Government; but we need 100 000 signatures in order to force a debate in the House of Commons.

The disability community have come together under the umbrella of the ‘No Cap on Aspiration’ group and are calling for a debate in the House of Commons led by the Shadow Minister for Universities, Liam Byrne MP.
The briefing paper ‘Disabled Students Allowance (DSA) – a briefing for Members of Parliament’ is available below:
(link – the attached document in email)

We urge you to lobby your local MP to support this cause.

Supporting information:
· The Education (Student Support) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2014/2765/contents/made

· Impact Assessment

Higher Education: disabled students’ allowances - equality analysis https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-education-disabled-stu...

· Impact assessment

Higher Education: (Student Support) Regulations 2014 - equality analysis https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-education-the-educatio...

· Written statement to Parliament

Higher education: student support: changes to Disabled Students' Allowances (DSA) https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/higher-education-student-support-...