New Figures Show Best Young Welsh Brains Are Being Lost to Universities and Colleges across English Border; GOVERNMENT PLEDGES TO TRYR TOHALT L BRAIN DRAIN
Byline: GARETH EVANS V Education Correspondent gareth.evav firstname.lastname@example.org
THE Welsh Government says it will work with universities to encourage high calibre students to stay in Wales a amid fears that top Welsh brains are being lost to universities in England.
Figures r obtainedi by Education Walesa provide clear evidence that the nation's ' best young brains are being lost to higher education institutions across the border.
They also highlight the apparent gulf in stature that exists between Welsh universities and their English counterparts.
A table based on average tariff points -the system employed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (Ucas) to calculate entry into higher education - reveals a marked dif-f ference in the grades students need in Walesa and England.
Welsh-domiciled learners had accumulated, on average, 305 tariff points to study in Wales a at the last count in 2011-12, compared to the 362 points required by those going to university in England.
It means that, on average, Welsh students needed 57 more points to study in England than they required in Wales - a- and the gap is widening.
In 2010-11, the gap stood at 53 points - Welsh students needing 294 points for Welsh universities and 347 points for those in England - and a year earlier, r average scores stood at 285 and 337 (a gap of 52 points).
The Welsh Government said its new higher education strategy involved working with the nation's ' universities to ensure the sector is attractive to students moving forward.
A breakdown by institution shows the majority of universities in Wales a accepted students from England at a higher tariff rate, with only Trinity r Saint David asking less of English-based learners.
Cardiff University, ay member of the prestigiout s Russell Group, accepted an average of 430 points from English students, but just 412 points from Welsh students.
The average tariff score for Welsh students at all Russell Group institutions was 423.
Meanwhile, Cardiff Metropolitan University accepted Welsh students with an average tariff haul of 270 in 2011-12 - below the 282 average of University Alliance members.
By comparison, the average point score obtained by Welshdomiciled learners studying at Oxbridge was 549 in 2011-12 - up from 522 a year earlier. r Sir John Cadogan, president of Wales' a Learned Society of leading academics, said the figures were cause for concern. "The Welsh Government has ensured that the already shaky financial security, y hence success, of our universities, is now increasingly in the hands of the students who will take their money to what they perceive to be the best universities," he said.
"Once again, we see that our best students are crossing the border, likely not to return to Wales. a This is no surprise and should worry the Government."
Under the Ucas tariff system, A-levels e and other school and college courses are each given a points score.
Universities then use the points to make offers to students applying to higher education, with an A at Aa -level yielding 120 points, a B grade 100 points and a C grade 80 points.
A spokesman for Cardiff University said the new tariff figures fail to reflect the variety of reasons why Welsh students choose to study outside Wales. …