Are Further Education Colleges becoming extinct?

Further education colleges have recently been subject to reviews and assessment designed to increase their efficiency at delivering the curriculum. This has resulted in colleges merging so there are fewer colleges offering student places now than say five years ago. There has been an increase in the amount of work based learning such as apprenticeship training, which has been a government priority recently, therefore reducing the number of college places that are required. This work based learning model is valuable as long as the work experience is high quality and truly prepares the candidate for work in the real world. For those who need to continue with their studies this approach may not be the best.

The emphasis on Maths and English ability is quite rightly a core element of any further education course. The Maths and English component mean that all learners who lack a Maths and/or English GCSE must work towards gaining one and those who already have these, may be encouraged to further their Maths/English studies. There is now available a course called Core Maths, which provides a level 3 Maths qualification short of A level. This means that there is a greater emphasis in all programmes on learners enhancing their Maths and English.