Photo caption: Education Minister Michelle Donelan (right) meets with digital tech students from Gateshead College

The Education Minister Michelle Donelan was in the region yesterday (10 October) to visit Gateshead College to see how they are preparing for the introduction of new qualifications called T Levels.

Described as the biggest change in education in 70 years, T Levels are a brand new, two-year technical qualification. They bring classroom learning and an extended industry placement together on a course designed with businesses and employers. Ideal for those who have finished GCSEs, students will spend 80% of their time in the classroom and 20% on an industry placement.

As an Ofsted outstanding provider with a long-standing track record of delivering high quality vocational and technical training, Gateshead College is one of the first education providers to be chosen to deliver these new qualifications.

On the visit, Ms Donelan met students who are using technology to prepare for work. Students working towards a career in nursey education demonstrated how they are learning about the development of a foetus using their mobile phones and a virtual reality app. They explained that, by using the technology, they are more engaged with the subject and will retain the information due to the visual nature of the experience.

Digital tech students also showcased the work that they have been doing in software engineering, robotics and augmented reality. The students explained how they are using the latest industry languages and software to work on real projects set by employers ensuring their skills are aligned to what employers want.

Education Minister Michelle Donelan said “It was great to visit Gateshead College and hear about the amazing work they are doing to help people of all ages and backgrounds to get the skills they need to progress and have rewarding careers. Their entire college ethos is built around ensuring that their students are work ready and get work or pursue further education.

“I met inspiring students and alumni including one inspirational young man who has gone full circle and is taking on students for industry placements in his own business.

“It was wonderful to hear the excitement that they have about T Levels and how they will take students to the next level.”

The T Levels will include an extended industry placement to help develop the skills employers need. Aligned to apprenticeship standards they offer a clear line of sight to higher and degree apprenticeships as well as continued study at university or straight into work.

Employer partners Alex Henderson of NewGen and Shona Tong of Gateshead Council attended the visit and explained to Ms Donelan how they’re contributing to the success of the new curriculum.

Alex said: “Whilst studying TV and Film at Gateshead College, I set up my own creative agency business. Since leaving, the college has been really supportive, inviting me to speak at business events and guiding me in how to make my business even more successful. I’m now really excited to be able to help the next generation of talent. I’ve employed one former student and I’m launching the NewGen Academy which will offer industry placements as part of the new T Levels.”

Ms Donelan also met Shona Tong from Gateshead Council who last year offered 18 placements, with two students securing jobs as a result and so far this year has taken 25 students into their Adult Social Care and Children and Young People’s Services.

Principal and Chief Executive of Gateshead College Judith Doyle said: “For a long time we’ve developed our curriculum in partnership with employers to make sure our students leave us with the skills, knowledge and behaviours employers want and the best possible chance of securing a job. With the introduction of the new T Levels in education and digital, we’re able to extend this even further, widening our network of business contacts and providing a learning experience that allows students to immerse themselves in their chosen industry.”

Gateshead College will offer three new T Levels from September 2020 in Digital Production, Design and Development, Healthcare/Health Science and Education and Child Care. 

You may also be interested in these articles:

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Newsroom Activity

Solvendis added a new event 18 hours

Designated Safeguarding Lead Training (Zoom Conferencing)

A provider’s Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) plays a critical role in its approach to safeguarding its learners, training its staff, providing...

  • Wednesday, 15 September 2021 10:00 AM
  • Zoom Conferencing
Solvendis added a new event 18 hours

Level 3 Award in Education & Training (Zoom Conferencing)

  • Thursday, 23 September 2021 10:00 AM
  • Zoom Conferencing
Solvendis added a new event 18 hours

Ofsted Inspection Nominee Training (Zoom Conferencing)

Within inspection, Ofsted invites providers to nominate a senior member of staff to act as the main link with the inspection team. Ofsted suggests...

  • Friday, 23 July 2021 10:00 AM
  • Zoom Conferencing

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 Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 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, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

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.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page