Valentine’s card handover at the Treasury

Valentine’s card handover at the Treasury

This Thursday (14th February), the #LoveOurColleges campaign will deliver a Valentine’s card to the Chancellor urging him to increase college funding and fund a fair pay deal for staff.

The card handover will take place at 12.15pm at HM Treasury on Horse Guards Road.

The #LoveOurColleges campaign is about making the case for extra government funding to support fair pay and funding in further education.

UCU head of policy, Matt Waddup, said:

‘The government speaks a lot about the importance of skills, but massive cuts to further education funding have left staff and students worse off. It’s time for the Chancellor to show his support for the vital work of colleges by funding them properly and investing in the further education workforce.’

The campaign is supported by UCU, Unison, Unite, GMB, NEU, NUS, TUC, ASCL and the Association of Colleges, who held a week of action from 15-19 October, including a national lobby of parliament on 17 October 2018.

How can I support the campaign?

There are lots of ways you can support the #LoveOurColleges campaign:

  • Tweet using the #LoveOurColleges hashtag to say why you think the government should invest more in colleges and their staff and students
  • write to your local MP asking them to support fair funding in FE and sign Early Day Motion 1686 calling for urgent in investment in FE colleges - see draft text below.
  • sign this petition calling for sustainable funding for FE   

Background to the campaign

Further education colleges are an essential part of England's education system. Whether it's through top-class technical education, basic skills or lifelong learning, colleges help people of all ages and backgrounds to make the most of their talents and ambitions. Rooted in local communities, they are crucial in driving social mobility and providing the skills to boost local and regional economies.

From 2009 to 2019, college funding has been cut by around 30%. This drop in funding has led to:

  • fewer hours of teaching and support for young people
  • a drastic reduction in the number of learning opportunities for adults
  • the value of staff pay falling by over 25% since 2009
  • college teachers earning £7,000 less on average than school teachers.

This situation is not sustainable and ultimately impacts on college students and staff, businesses, communities and the wider economy.

What we are calling for

Trade unions, students and college leaders are coming together to call for better funding and fair pay for further education colleges.

We are calling on the government to:

  1. increase college funding to sustainable levels, including but not limited to:
    • Increasing the 16-19 funding rate by 5% a year for the next five years, and extending the pupil premium to cover post-16 students
    • Fully funding a National Retraining Scheme to support level 3 to 5 skills
    • Introducing a lifetime learning entitlement to fund skills training for all adults who have not previously achieved a level 3 qualification.
  2. provide immediate exceptional funding, ring-fenced for pay, to cover the costs of a fair pay deal for college staff from 2018/19 onwards.

Read the  Love Our Colleges manifesto [752kb] for more information.

Write to your MP

You can help us campaign for better pay and funding in further education by writing to your MP using our online tool.

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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.

Podcasts

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.

Events

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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