cites Leeds in Lords debate
Melvyn Bragg used the University as a 'little local reference'
during a recent Lords debate on education and skills.
Declaring his interest as Leeds' Chancellor, the Labour
peer said "We have decided finally, it seems
to me that our future lies in our brains. I find
it encouraging that the government are now addressing
the engine-room of the intellect; that is, the universities."
participation to attract students from poorer homes was
achievable, as the Ogden scholarships piloted by the University
had shown, he said. After the first two years, 23 of 26
scholars had university places but such schemes
only worked if properly funded.
cited Leeds' excellence in teaching quality despite years
of reduction in the teaching resource and increasing student
numbers. This could only continue, he said, if funding
was maintained in real terms. "Tight squeezes
can be strangulating."
quality at Leeds and many other universities has risen
despite great obstacles, Lord Bragg continued. If RAE
2001 had been fully funded for 2003, the University would
have won an additional £7.5 million in place of
the £2.5 million it is now set to receive.
the government's investment in infrastructure, he said:
"If the research budget continues to be underfunded,
there will not be the revenue support to utilise this
infrastructure. Therefore, the only benefit will go to
students of irony."
the full text of the debate online Lord Bragg's
intervention begins in column 286.