Research and Education

New FE Commissioner to tackle poor performing FE colleges

Dr David Collins CBE will take the new post of Further Education (FE) Commissioner, responsible for driving improvement and acting quickly to tackle failing colleges, Skills and Enterprise Minister Matthew Hancock announced today (14 November 2013).

Takeover threat for failing council

The children's services department at Birmingham City Council could be taken over by the Department for Education, the BBC learns.

Good practice resource - Getting to good: How new 14 –16 school partnerships helped to move Bicton College on and up

Bicton College struggled for many years to be better than satisfactory for overall effectiveness. This example shows some of the new approaches it adopted in its work with younger students and the changes to the 14 – 16 curriculum that have helped raise its game. Successful links with schools, employers and the local community have helped to adapt the curriculum to reflect modern day rural life and help more people progress to land-based careers.

It was judged good at its latest inspection.

Minister attacks starved boy review

Children's Minister Edward Timpson strongly criticises a report that says a four-year-old Bradford boy starved to death after being let down by "national systems".

New $50 million finance facility to help small businesses export to Russia

UK Export Finance (UKEF) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Russian-based bank, Alfa Bank, to help British firms looking to export to Russia.

New $50 million finance facility to help small businesses export to Russia

UK Export Finance (UKEF) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Russian-based bank, Alfa Bank, to help British firms looking to export to Russia.

Variation fees for children's social care services

This document was updated in November 2013.

A leaflet with details of the variation fees.

The variation fees are set out in The Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Fees and Frequency of Inspections) (Children’s Homes etc.) Regulations 2007.

Shortfall in free nursery place scheme

Data shows just seven out of 10 of the most disadvantaged two-year-olds earmarked for free childcare have been offered a place.

Prime minister targets overseas funds with new inward investment body

A new one-stop-shop has been set up to help international investors identify and fund regeneration opportunities in the UK.

Funding and Consultations

Update - Issue 184

Issue 184 of Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.

Skills Funding Agency – Communications Update 06

Skills Funding Agency – Communications Update 06

Update - Issue 182

Issue 182 of Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.

Update - Issue 181

Issue 181 of Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.

Communications Update – Issue 06

Issue 06 of Communications Update, the Agency’s new monthly channel designed for marketing, communications and business development staff in colleges and training organisations.

Update - Issue 183

Issue 183 of Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.

Payments and Data

Payments and Data

Innovation through technology funding call

Jisc is starting a new million pound funding programme to improve the learner experience and increase the capability and capacity of the workforce across further education and skills providers. Money will be awarded to projects which encourage, support and promote innovation within the sector.

Deadline for submissions: Friday 6 December 2013, 12:00 noon

We provide digital services for UK education and research. This grant funding gives providers in the sector the opportunity to get involved with our work and directly benefit from the products and services developed.

We are looking to fund innovative projects to:

  • Integrate new technologies in learning and teaching, assessment and business activities
  • Overcome barriers to the adoption and use of technology in the sector
  • Develop new uses for technology or innovative adaption and rollout of technologies.

Download full details and application information (PDF)

Download full details and application information (Word docx)

We are building on the success of previous funding, which supported 33 projects in every region of the UK.  These projects were diverse and innovative including:

  • Kendal College developed augmented reality learning materials which provide students taking vocational qualifications with a more visual way of learning
  • An accessible version of YouTube developed by Henshaws College will enable people with learning difficulties and disabilities to use this mainstream technology independently
  • British Sign Language tutors can now benefit from a bank of 100 national resources developed by Lancashire Adult Learning Service, saving them the time and effort of producing their own 
  • New recruits to the armed forces can start their apprenticeships online thanks to LAGAT’s (Lincolnshire training provider) online induction programme

Resources from phase one of the programme can be found by searching for 'feskills' on the Jorum website.

The sorts of things we are looking to fund include:

  • Creating resources, tools or products
  • Developing organisational and collaborative processes using digital technologies
  • Developing apps
  • Creating augmented reality resources
  • Improving or adapting current technologies and resources (some already available through Jorum)
  • Developing new uses for technologies

This funding will establish projects which respond to the government policies in each of the devolved nations, which are intended to improve the learner experience and meet the needs of employment across the UK.

The total funding available is £1,000,000 and the funding call offers opportunities to bid for different levels of funding ranging from £5,000 to £100,000 depending upon the scale of the project and numbers of providers involved in the areas outlined above.

Deadline for submissions is Friday 6 December 2013 at 12:00 noon.

Eligibility

Bids are invited from further education and skills providers funded via the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Scottish Funding Council, the Welsh Government or the Department for Employment and Learning Northern Ireland.  

Proposals may be from single organisations or consortia. Partnerships with other organisations from within, and outside, the sector are encouraged. 

The funding call document will provide further information about eligibility.

Advice and guidance

For support and advice to apply for this funding you can contact your local Regional Support Centre.

If you have and specific queries related to the funding call and bidding please contact Nigel Ecclesfield, programme manager n.ecclesfield@jisc.ac.uk or Ann Lloyd, funding and programme support office manager a.lloyd@jisc.ac.uk.

Download full details and application information (PDF)

Download full details and application information (Word docx)

Update - Issue 175

Issue 175 of Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.

Update - Issue 172

Issues 172 pf Update, the Agency's weekly round-up of business-critical information and news for the further education sector.