Scottish graduate fees will not rise says Ruth Davidson

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson. Picture: Lisa Ferguson
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson. Picture: Lisa Ferguson
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The Scottish Conservatives’ planned graduate charge of £1,500 a year for university students will not be increased over the course of the next parliament, leader Ruth Davidson has pledged.

She told BBC Radio Scotland that money raised from the graduate contribution would be “ring-fenced for post-16 education”.

When asked if it would remain at £1,500, she told the Good Morning Scotland programme: “That is the policy for this parliament, absolutely.”

Ms Davidson said: “One of the big things we want to do with it is replace the money that the SNP government has ripped out of bursaries for young people from poorer backgrounds.

“It’s shocking actually that you are only half as likely if you are from a poor background to go to university in Scotland as if you lived in another part of the UK.”

The Scottish Conservative leader was also tackled on George Osborne’s Budget and laughed nervously when asked if she had told the Chancellor his plans to cut benefits for the disabled were wrong. Ms Davidson said she had made her views clear.

Lib Dem peer Lord Purvis said: “There is nothing remotely funny about taking thousands of pounds away from hundreds of thousands of people.”