If you work in a School or College, Beware Social Investment

Since this posting seeks to reach a wider readership, new readers please start here: Huckfield main points and conclusions are in this colour. Links or documents are highlighted in this colour. Huckfield recognises that there is already growing private sector provision in Schools and Colleges but is sad to see a substantial Social Investment in… Read more »

Black Country Partnership for Learning Spring Conference at the Hawthorns Conference Centre, West Bromwich on Friday 25 May 2012

Huckfield would like to emphasise that this is not an ‘opinion posting’ but is offered as a comprehensive record of the Black Country Partnership for Learning Spring Conference on Friday 25 May 2012. It is based on notes taken throughout the Conference and on speakers’ presentations. KEITH BATE, PRINCIPAL OF HALESOWEN COLLEGE Introduction In his… Read more »

Black Country Partnership for Learning Further and Higher Education Conference Friday 25 May 2012

THIS CONFERENCE IS A VERY TIMELY EVENT This piece represents a strong Huckfield recommendation. At only £95, this Conference represents exceedingly good value. A similar London Conference would be at last £300 plus fares. This is the Black Country Partnership for Learning Online Booking Form. Black Country Partnership for Learning Black Country Partnership for Learning… Read more »

FE Professionalism – You couldn’t make it up if you tried!

TEN WASTED YEARS OFSTED 2003 Report and the 2007 Regulations. Huckfield has an active background around Further Education (FE) and has always raised concerns about limited external understanding of the FE Sector. This Huckfield briefing laments 10 wasted years of trying to improve professional standards in Further Education in England. Even OFSTED, whose Initial Training… Read more »

Griggs’ Governance Report Deserves a Context

BACKGROUND Professor Russel Griggs’ “Report of the Review of Further Education Governance in Scotland” submitted to Scottish Ministers on Friday 20 January 2012 contains some pretty strong stuff. Professor Griggs’ team has delivered a comprehensive report on governance, in which structures for new regional further education boards are laid out in immaculate detail. But they lack… Read more »

Employer Ownership of Skills

The UK Commission for Employment and Skills launched its bidding Prospectus for Employer Ownership of Skills on Tuesday 07 February 2012. Previous Huckfield briefings on Employer Ownership Pilots have appeared here since Wednesday 07 December 2011. The Bidding Timetable and details of Briefing Sessions are shown below. Though Employer Ownership Pilots apply only in England,… Read more »

Funding for Scotland’s Colleges

Sincere apologies for the length of this Huckfield briefing. The following detailed sections seek to provide information for Scotland’s Further Education Colleges and others along similar lines to that previously provided in Huckfield briefings for Further Education and Higher Education in England. Many of Scotland’s Colleges will be familiar with funding initiatives listed. No claim… Read more »

“New Challenges, New Chances”: No Central Bank for Colleges’ Sovereign Debts.

Last week, most focus on was the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement. This week it has been on the Prime Minister’s difficulties with his Party and with the proposed Merkozy Amendments to the Lisbon Treaty. So it’s probably understandable that the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills’ publication of two more chapters in its “New Challenges. New… Read more »

Launch of Employer Ownership Pilots on Tuesday 13 December 2011

As featured before in Important Grant News, Prime Minister David Cameron and Vince Cable first mentioned the Employer Ownership Pilots initiative on Thursday 17 November 2011. Vince Cable said then: “We have to fundamentally alter the relationship between employers and the state – giving employers the space and opportunity for greater ownership of the vocational… Read more »

Note from the Black Country Partnership for Learning Post Wolf Conference at West Bromwich on Friday 25 November 2011

(though Leslie Huckfield was one of the contributors at this event, this is posted as an objective summary of the day’s events) Patrick Highton, Executive Director of the Black Country Learning Partnership, who had organised the Conference, welcomed colleagues to what he described as a timely event. There were ongoing Consultations and Responses on 14… Read more »

All Change from Early Years to Higher Education

Whereas Eric Pickles’ Communities and Local Government Department sometimes seems sandwiched between the British Property Federation and the National Trust, there is little sign of any sandwiching of policies on which the Department for Education and Business Innovation and Skills have embarked. The significant feature emerging from all proposed Primary, Secondary, Further and Higher Education… Read more »

Employers, Skills and Qualifications – New Approaches Needed

This Note suggests how more direct employer involvement in the development of skills and qualifications might be explored. Professor Alison Wolf’s Review of Vocational Education (known as the Wolf Report) was published in March 2011. Her first and second conclusions concern vocational training and education in general: “all young people should receive a high quality… Read more »

Alison Wolf Points the Way

Employers, further colleges and all involved in skills and qualifications owe a debt of gratitude to Professor Alison Wolf’s “Review of Vocational Education” for enabling Further Education to “come out”. It’s now OK and acceptable to write and speak openly on skills and their delivery. Further Education is coming out. Professor Wolf has been writing… Read more »

Further Education Colleges need a Wider Role than “Vocational Value”

On Monday 20 June, the Policy Exchange think tank published “Vocational Value: The Role of Further Education Colleges in Higher Education”. Though this appeared a week before “Students at the Heart of the System”,  from the high level Conservative patronage and endorsements proudly displayed on its website, Policy Exchange must have had a good idea… Read more »