He was speaking after it emerged heard that the Department for Economy have been considering measures including cutting university places, increasing tuition fees by nearly 60 per cent and abolishing the Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA) to make up a £65m shortfall after the department lost £100m in EU funding.
Said the Foyle MLA: “The proposals brought forward by the Department for Economy have caused serious alarm amongst our young people and the higher education sector.
“The DUP have made a mess of this department for the last 15 years and now it looks as though their fanatical pursuit of the hardest Brexit possible will result in a huge funding shortfall and their plan is to pass the cost for this onto our young people.
“Every person in the North should be able to pursue their education to whatever level they wish and fulfil their full potential.
“Cutting apprenticeship training, university places, and EMA, while raising tuition fees will create serious barriers to education in the North.
“It will also result in less people receiving qualifications, with a knock-on effect for our entire economy.
“We were told by the DUP and other Brexit cheerleaders that leaving the UK would result in huge funding becoming available to spend on public services – the opposite has proved true and vital funding has been lost.
“To remove this funding is to close the door on the futures of so many young people here who rely on these provisions to further their studies.
“They should not be forced to pay the price of DUP failure.”