§ 2.36 p.m.
§ LORD FERRIER
My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.
§ [The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government, with reference to paragraph 4 of the Ministerial Statement about overseas students' fees of December 21, whether they will state whether the last words "present course" apply to a course of "higher" studies, preparatory to taking a place in a university, as distinct from a university course, or whether the words cover the whole process to graduation.]
§ THE LORD PRIVY SEAL (THE EARL OF LONGFORD)
My Lords, the exact definition of the qualification for the transitional increase of £50 a year is a matter on which my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Education and Science will wish to consult the appropriate authorities. But, as he made clear in another place last Thursday, the intention is that students already embarked on a sequence of courses should not have to curtail their studies by being faced with a large increase in fee when they move from one course to another.
§ LORD GLADWYN
My Lords, would the noble Earl tell the House whether the Government agree that perhaps the recently announced reduction in Fulbright scholarships is the result of the recent heavy increase in students' fees?
§ THE EARL OF LONGFORD
Well, my Lords, I suppose I am here to answer any question on any related topic, but that question does not arise directly from 996 the original Question. I do not know whether I feel called upon to offer an opinion, but I would submit very respectfully to the noble Lord that if fees had been increased generally, which was the alternative course recommended by noble Lords, the effect on the finances of the Fulbright Commission would have been very much the same.