Mr Johnson said he wanted to “end this bogus distinction between further education and higher education”, saying that further education colleges would be given full access to the student loans system so they are “better able to compete with universities”.
In a speech following the announcement, Mr Johnson said the pandemic had highlighted “a shortage of UK-trained lab technicians” and also said there were shortages of skilled construction workers, engineers and IT workers, which he argued was down to a shortage of “supply” in skills.
“I don’t for a second want to blame our universities,” the prime minister continued. And he called for young people to be given the chance to look at “more practical options” which “lead more directly to well-paid jobs”.
“This new arrangement will provide finance for shorter term studies, rather than having to study in one three- or four-year block.”