NUS Scotland has launched its Scottish Parliament Election manifesto - A Student Guarantee for Scotland. Amidst a pandemic that has exposed a mental health crisis and rising debts and poverty amongst students, NUS Scotland is calling for education to be at the heart of our recovery from Covid-19 and for no student or apprentice to be left behind.
The manifesto outlines what students will be looking for when voting in the Scottish Parliament Election on 6 May 2021, and includes the flagship policy, “an Education Leaver Guarantee” for all students newly qualifying and graduating to ensure students and apprentices of all ages have a positive destination upon completion of their studies.
Other key policies include a student mental health action plan to tackle the mental health crisis amongst students; increased financial support that keeps up with the cost of learning; and rent controls that put an end to the exorbitant rent hikes student tenants face.
The manifesto calls on all political parties to commit to removing inequalities in our education system and barriers to learning. It sets out solutions and a benchmark for understanding where candidates and their parties stand on the issues that matter most to students.
Commenting on the launch NUS Scotland President, Matt Crilly, said:
“This is undoubtedly the most important election of our lives. For the last year students’ have faced untold disruption to their studies, wellbeing and their lives as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. They have told us, loudly and clearly, that inequalities simply cannot continue in our education system.
"They want a guarantee which fully supports and protects them. That is why we are calling for a Scotland where no student or apprentice misses out on learning because they can’t get online or afford a bus pass. We want a student support system that ensures no student relies on food banks, that sees sky-high rents are brought under control, and the erradication of institutional racism.
“To deliver the best for Scotland, we need to deliver the best for our students and apprentices. That’s why we’re inviting all parties to listen and commit to the action needed to create a future in which everyone can thrive.”
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