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87% of further education lecturers polled for a questionnaire feel that management structures have "actively contributed to stress".

Further, nearly all of those who responded (92%) felt that increased burdens of administration was a key factor in an increase in their respective workloads.

The University and College Union (UCU), together with the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) conducted a survey in September 2006, asking around 5000 further education and higher education staff about workloads and stress, with more than 1000 responding.

Results indicate that the main causes for work-related stress were due to demands for hitting targets and deadlines, long working hours, increased workloads and "frequent" changes to timetables and courses.

As a result, many of the respondents cited "pronounced" symptoms of stress; 46% reported poor sleeping patterns, 39% recorded exhaustion, while a further 35% spoke of anxiety.

Roger Kline, Head of Equality and Employment Rights at the UCU, said: "Across the whole of post-16 education stress is now at epidemic levels. We have warned for a long time that something has to be done but this survey suggests things have deteriorated still further".

"Tackling the causes of stress - excessive workloads, a long hours culture, a lack of influence over their work, job insecurity, a bullying culture and burgeoning administration - is now the top priority for our union. It is bad for staff and damaging to students, learning and research. We are now actively seeking legal test cases on excessive hours and against employer's breaching their duty of care to staff, to back up our local campaigns".

Mr Kline added: "As student staff ratios rise and bureaucracy rockets, it appears that only collective action and legal threats will serve as a wake up call".

71% found it "very stressful" that while they were given responsibility, they were not empowered to make decisions; 69% recorded their lack of participation in decision-making was similarly a major factor for stress.

Nearly four-fifths (78%) said that morale had worsened over the last three years.

General Secretary of the ATL, Dr Mary Bousted, expressed concern, saying: "We are surprised, but still horrified by the story this survey shows. Staff working in FE and HE should not be suffering harassment - 61% - or being bullied - 58% - at all, let alone in these large numbers. We are deeply concerned that so many of them feel undervalued - 72%. Staff can"t work effectively in colleges which treat them badly - not only do the staff suffer but their students also suffer as a result and its not good for the colleges in the long-run either".

"We cant allow these appalling conditions to continue unchallenged - it really is not good enough in the 21st century. ATL urges members to report any instances of poor behaviour so they can be contested for the good of everyone working and studying in FE and HE".

Vijay Pattni.


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Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.


We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.


FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

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