MATURE students will lose thousands of pounds in financial support and be forced to take out loans to pay for courses.
The change to further education funding is expected to hit hundreds of students aged 24 or older at Wakefield College.
The government currently subsidises 50 per cent of many courses for over 24s, but this is being scrapped, leaving students faced with taking out loans of up to £4,000 a year to pay for their studies.
The move has raised fears that the prospect of debts will stop people from going into education.
University fees have already been trebled and the Educational Maintenance Allowance, a benefit which helped young people stay in education, has been scrapped.
Wakefield MP Mary Creagh said: “This out-of-touch government’s plan to scrap financial support for college students aged older than 24 will hit almost 900 people studying for a second chance at Wakefield College.
“This attack on aspiration will do nothing to get young people off the dole or provide the skills our economy needs. Ministers should think again and invest in adult learners trying to get on in the world.”
Wakefield College said it was reviewing the new arrangements and advice was available to help students with their finances.
Principal Sam Wright said: “Any legislation which affects funding and an individual’s decision to enter or continue their education is a concern for Wakefield College.”