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News

23/09/2018

Colleges Week 2018: Everything you need to know

#LoveOurColleges - Fair Funding Campaign / Colleges Week 15 Oct - 19 Oct

The inaugural Colleges Week will take place next month, with the aim of getting the government to boost Further Education (FE) funding.

Here is everything you need to know about the week of action.

What is Colleges Week?

Colleges Week will see colleges, including SGS, across the country, along with education unions and students, hosting events to showcase all they do and raise awareness of the funding challenges that colleges face.

It is part of the Love Our Colleges campaign, a link-up between college staff, students and supporters and the education unions to promote colleges on the national stage.

When does it take place?

Colleges Week runs from Monday 15 October to Friday 19 October 2018.

The week is focused around a national lobby of Parliament on Wednesday 17 October, which will involve principals lobbying MPs and education trade unionists marching and then rallying in Parliament Square.

Why is it happening?

Alongside the Love Our Colleges campaign, Colleges Week aims to raise the profile of the FE sector and the 2.2 million people it trains each year.

Ultimately, we hope to get better funding for the FE sector. Campaign material points to successes elsewhere in the public sector of raising awareness of budgetary pressures, including schools, the NHS and police.

It has been instigated due to widespread concern over funding levels in the FE sector. A report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies highlighted the scale of the issue: per-student spending in FE and sixth-form colleges is around 8 per cent lower than in secondary schools.

Spending per student in FE has also fallen by around 12 per cent in real terms since 2010. In 2019-20, funding levels will be at about the same level as in 2006-07 – and only 10 per cent higher than back in 1989-90.

There are also concerns over the growing gap between pay in schools and colleges, which currently stands at £7,000 on average. In July, the Department for Education announced that school teachers would be receiving a pay rise of between 1.5 per cent and 3.5 per cent, part-funded by the DfE.

However, last month it emerged that the government would not be funding a similar rise for the FE sector.

Who is taking part?

SGS and many other Colleges around the country.

The Love Our Colleges campaign is also a partnership between the Association of Colleges, NUS students’ union, Association of College and School Leaders, University and College Union (UCU), GMB, TUC, National Education Union and Unison.

How you can support the Love Our Colleges Campaign with SGS College

  • Use the ‘Love Our Colleges’ logo and hashtag #LoveOurColleges on your company or personal website, email signature and social media.

The LoveOurColleges logo can be downloaded at www.collegesweek.co.uk/resource-hub or copied below:

#LoveOurColleges - Fair Funding Campaign / Colleges Week 15 Oct - 19 Oct

  • Post your support of the campaign via social media retweeting / posting messages from the SGS College Twitter and Facebook sites.
  • Lobby your local MP about the issue of fair funding for Colleges so we can invest in the local communities futures.
  • Follow @AoC_info on Twitter for the latest social media campaign activities.
  • Attend the Years 7-13 Ambitions careers event with your son/daughter on Tuesday 16 October, 4.30pm-7.30pm, at our SGS WISE campus in Bristol to show support of your local College.

Please Sign The Petition Now

As part of the national ‘Love Our Colleges’ campaign, a petition to ‘Increase college funding to sustainable levels’ has just been set up by Brockenhurst College, supported by the Association of Colleges.

The petition calls on the Government to urgently increase college funding to sustainable levels, including immediate parity with recently announced increases to schools funding. This will give all further education students a fair chance, give college staff fair pay and provide the high-quality skills the country needs.

We would really welcome your support and if you wish to sign the petition, please use the link below:

Link to the Petition