THE UK Government Secretary of State for Education has championed the success of the Borders College on a visit to its facilities alongside the local MP and MSP.

UK education minister, Gillian Keegan, was joined on the tour by Scottish Borders politicians John Lamont MP and Rachael Hamilton MSP.

Ms Keegan praised the “great work” of the college in providing “exciting opportunities” for young people.

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Borders politicians hailed the college for its contribution to the local economy and the role it plays in developing skills and advancing careers of its students.

Ms Keegan said: “It was a pleasure to tour the fantastic facilities and hear first-hand about all the great work that's happening at the Borders College alongside John Lamont MP and Rachael Hamilton MSP.

“The Borders College provides exciting opportunities for young people to learn new skills, earn a good qualification, and advance their careers.

“I would urge the SNP Government to listen to Borders residents and fully support the college to continue the excellent experience it provides for ambitious local people to get ahead.”

Mr Lamont said: “Borders College develops the skills and advances the careers of thousands of local young people every year.

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“It was very interesting to see first-hand the high standard of practical work already being achieved by the apprentices, and the innovative teaching methods being used at the college.

“That’s why I have been urging the SNP Government to increase funding to the college, so it can deliver even more places for students and continue to offer a first-class learning experience.”

Ms Hamilton said: "It was fantastic to welcome Gillian Keegan MP to the Borders College campus in Galashiels to join her in learning about the innovative teaching practices given here in the Borders.

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"The college gives valuable learning opportunities to students to allow them to continue living and working in the Borders while helping our local economy grow.

"Thank you to Pete, the members of staff and all the students involved who did an excellent job in showcasing the best of what Borders College has to offer."