Colleges back proposal to include PPHs in College Contribution Scheme

By on May 3, 2021

first_imgThe motion notes differences in the studentexperience which could be due to discrepanciesin endowment between colleges, including:“sports facilities, travel grants, hardship funds,libraries, student mental health support, musicand drama facilities, accommodation costs andvacation residence, and food prices.” St Catz, New, Somerville, and Merton haveall passed the proposal, while Corpus, Anne’s,Brasenose, Exeter, Magdalen, Keble, HarrisManchester, Regent’s Park, St Benets, Trinity,and Pembroke have the motion tabled for their8th week JCR meetings. “This commitment is not being adhered to ifthe very poorest institutions are being excludedfrom a scheme to give poorer colleges access tofunds to improve the student experience.” “The message to the University from the undergraduate body is clear: maintaining PPH exclusion from access to desperately-needed financial assistance that is available to institutions many times richer than our own is not only unjust, contrary to the rationale and the sentiment behind the establishment of the CCS as a means to redress vast inter-college financial discrepancies that have genuinely detrimental consequences for students at poorer institutions, but it is also fundamentally unpopular throughout Oxford, even to those completely unaffected by this current state of affairs. The motion calls attention to how their exclusion from the CCS “prevents PPHs from expanding independent access efforts, expanding and refurbishing student accommodation, and ensuring a basic level of student experience in line with the rest of the University. The CCS seeks to help poorer colleges, but ignores the poorest of all.” A group of colleges are passing a motion to mandate JCR presidents to lobby their governing bodies to include PPHs in the College Contribution Scheme. The College Contribution Scheme (CCS) is a mechanism designed for richer Oxford colleges to contribute to poorer colleges’ maintenance and costs. Currently PPHs are not included in the scheme, despite being typically poorer than other colleges. Merton President, Emily Clark, told Cherwell: “I am proud to say that Merton JCR voted unanimously to support the reduction of inequalities across student experiences at PPHs and at established colleges. We wish this campaign thebest of luck going forward.” Robinson added: “With Oxford’s collected JCRs and the SU officially on side, we are as best placed as we could be to give PPHs much- needed and transformative funding; regardless of the eventual outcome, this discussion simply would not have happened without their willing- ness to help, and for that I am beyond grateful on behalf of Regent’s and of PPHs generally for the support that we have been given. center_img This follows the SU passing a motion earlier this month which mandated the SU President to lobby for the scheme to be expanded. The motion was proposed by President of Regent’s Park College (a PPH), William Robinson. “During the admissions process there is no way of expressing a negative preference for a college or PPH, and so the University assures applicants that their experience will be comparable at whatever college they end up at. PPHs have a limited ability to change thesituation for themselves; in order to change thescheme one requires a seat at the Conference ofColleges, which PPHs do not have. Rick Trainor,the Chair of the Conference of Colleges, haspreviously declined to comment on the issueas negotiations are still ongoing. The structureof the new Scheme is set to be announced nextterm. Speaking to Cherwell, Robinson said: “It isincredibly heartening to see the sheer numberof students across Oxford who, despite havingno vested interest in including PPHs in the CCS,recognise the injustice and irrationality of ourcurrent exclusion. Mansfield have also supported PPHs being able to access the fund but haven’t passed the specific motion. “My hope is that this has not all been in vain,and it is now for the University to respond tothis turning tide.”last_img read more

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