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Snowdon calls for funding revamp

LORD SNOWDON has called for an overhaul of education funding for the disabled.

A new survey commissioned for the celebrity photographer says that disabled students still experience barriers to further and higher education.

These include lack of funding, inaccessible buildings and facilities, a lack or awareness among staff in colleges and universities and tutors' low academic expectations of disabled students.

Leeds University's Disability Research Unit questioned more than 200 students who had taken part in the Snowdon Award Scheme, which has offered grants to students since 1981.

It found that students had limited eligibility for the Disabled Students' Allowance and that levels of discretionary awards varied around the country. Local authorities which gave money to students were found to lack knowledge on the types of funding available.

The study recommended an expansion of the DSA to include students going into FE and postgraduate courses, and the creation of a single disabled student support body for England and Wales.

Lord Snowdon said at the launch of the study last week: "Education is the key to ensuring that disabled people work and play a full role in society rather than remain in a life of benefits. Disabled students need additional funding to help them access the education which is so vital."

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