§ Mr. Walden
I refer my hon. Friend to UGC circular letter 6/87 of 10 February 1987, a copy of which is in the Library. Paragraph 10 of that letter readsA number of institutions have commented that, by basing its resource allocations on a resource per student which depends on subject but not on institution, the Committee has put small institutions at a disadvantage because they have relatively high overheads. This point has been examined by statistical analysis and the conclusions do not support the hypothesis that as a general rule small institutions have higher unit costs than large institutions. The Committee nevertheless expects to give further thought to this point. Meanwhile the grant distributions announced in this letter do not take account of any effect that size might have.
§ Mr. Best
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will set out the mathematical formula adopted by the University Grants Committee for the distribution of University Grants Committee funds to universities; if he proposes to take over this function himself; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Walden
The method employed by the University Grants Committee for the distribution of recurrent grant in 1986–87 was described in detail in the Committee's circular letter 22/85 of 19 November 1985. Modifications introduced for the distribution of recurrent grant in 1987–88 are described in circular letter 6/87 of 10 February 1987. Copies of both letters are in the Library. The distribution of grant to individual universities is properly a matter for the University Grants Committee, and my right hon. Friend has no plans to take it over.
Mr. asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what information he has as to the 576W amount of the recurring grant provided by his Department for universities through the University Grants Committee which has been spent in meeting rates bills by universities in (a)Scotland, (b)England and Wales and (c)total (i) in 1979 and (ii) the most recent year for which figures are available.
§ Mr. Walden
The amounts of recurrent grant paid to universities by the University Grants Committee for the purpose of paying local authority rates in Scotland, England and Wales and Great Britain in the academic years 1979–80 and 1985–86 are as follows:
£'000 cash 1979–80 1985–86 Scotland 9,790 24,677 England and Wales 26,982 67,154 Great Britain 36,772 91,831