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ACP to be formally recognised

An association which promotes an “open and trusting partnership between universities and colleges” will be formally launched by Bill Rammell MP later this month.

The Association of Collaborative Provision of HE in Further Education in England (ACP) enables institutions to work together to deliver higher education programmes in FE colleges. And thanks to the participation of the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) and the Association of Colleges (AoC), the association will now be recognised officially.

Dr Ian Tunbridge, Dean of the University of Plymouth Colleges Faculty and a member of ACP’s executive committee, said: “By ensuring that those institutions which are committed to high quality partnership work share best practice, the Association will drive up the level of service ““ to the benefit of learners”.

Mr Rammell, Minister of State for Lifelong Learning will give the keynote speech at the launch at London South Bank University on the 17th October 2006.

Professor Chris Green, ASP’s Chair, said: “When we first started meeting informally in 2002 it became very clear that we needed to take control of our own relationships”.

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“Our aim is to represent the interests of collaborative provision of HE in FE to policy makers and to work consultatively with other representative bodies within the HE in FE sectors,” he added. “The forum also gives us an excellent opportunity to debate, share good practice, support each other and give impartial advice.”

Peter Wood, Vice-Principal of Guildford College, who is also on the executive committee, added: “Colleges make a vital contribution in reaching new learners and offering opportunities to students who might not otherwise be able to access higher education.

“It is becoming widely recognised that developing an open and trusting partnership between universities and colleges is the best way of ensuring increased participation and supporting progression,” he said.

Annabel Hardy.

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