ULT's financial forecasts even further out

From £12m deficit to £14m surplus in just 12 months!

Last month we reported on the University Finance Director Martyn Riddleston's latest financial forecasts. We noted that having predicted a deficit of £12.2 million for 2016/17, he was now forecasting a surplus of £12.1 million. We suggested that the new situation completely vindicated UCU's debunking of the University's financial planning -- the University Leadership Team (ULT), we argued, had 'manufactured' a crisis in order to justify closing the Vaughan Centre for Lifelong Learning and sacking other colleagues.

Now, we learn that Mr Riddleston was even further out in his planning. The 2016/17 surplus he now predicts will be £14 million. In other words he -- and the 'leadership team' that he serves -- were out by a cool £26 million!

What seems particularly shameless about this most recent financial forecast is the way that the ULT not only fails to apologise for getting the figures so wrong -- and for the immense stress and uncertainty that this put on colleagues. It pretends that its own 'immediate action' was responsible for turning the situation around.

'Stronger than expected' student recruitment? In what way was this the result of the 'set of activities' put in place by the ULT?

'Careful management of staff costs'? Yes, colleagues are being made redundant -- perhaps this is what is meant by this -- but it is also the case that many others are escaping University of Leicester of their own volition. As we know from the case of Geography, some parts of the University at least are facing a 'staffing crisis.'

'Unbudgeted donations'? Yes, praise the 'excellent work by our alumni and development team alongside the School of Medicine', but again, how does the ULT justify taking credit for this excellent work?


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