Nationally, the Government is conducting area based reviews of post-16 education and training institutions – whilst schools and sixth forms are not included, you have the opportunity to submit views on the opportunities available for young people in Surrey. Nationally the reviews are focused in particular on creating more financially stable and efficient colleges but also on improving collaboration across different types of institution.
The policy document can be found on the Gov.UK website.
Reviews are designed to deliver:
- Institutions which are financially viable, sustainable, resilient and efficient, and deliver maximum value for public investment.
- An offer that meets each area’s educational and economic needs.
- Providers with strong reputations and greater specialisation.
- Sufficient access to high quality and relevant education and training for all.
- Provision which reflects changes in government funding priorities and future demand.
The area review for Surrey will hold its first meeting in March 2016 and will result in recommended options by August 2016. A local steering group has been established to oversee and steer the review’s work, including analysis and consideration of options for change.
The steering group is composed of the following colleges:
- Brooklands College
- East Surrey College
- Esher College
- Godalming College
- Guildford College
- North East Surrey College
- Reigate College
- Strode’s College
- The College of Richard Collyer
- Woking College
They will be joined by representatives from the local authority and the local enterprise partnership, the further education commissioner, the sixth form colleges commissioner and the funding agencies. The regional schools commissioner will work jointly with the local authority to ensure that the schools’ perspective is reflected in the discussions.
This is an important opportunity to shape further education provision for learners and employers in Surrey and to ensure clear, high quality professional and technical routes to employment, alongside robust academic routes, and better responsiveness to local employer needs delivered by strong, high status, and where relevant specialist, institutions.
We are particularly interested in how young people progress through the system from one provider to another, the effectiveness of those progression routes, and how they align with local economic need.
While the focus of area reviews is on college-based provision, the challenges facing the post-16 sector apply across the board and we need all providers to engage proactively with the review.
Your views are therefore invaluable, particularly in relation to the following questions, together with any supporting data or information you wish to share with the review team:
- What are the strengths of post-16 provision in your area? How can those strengths be capitalised on further?
- What are the weaknesses of post-16 provision and how should they be addressed?
- Are progression routes to both academic and the full range of vocational provision post-16 clear to your students? If not, how could they be improved?
- Is there sufficient breadth and quality in the post-16 offer to young people in your local area?
- Do you have collaborative links to local colleges? How could these be improved, for the benefit of young people?
- Any ideas for the improvement of provision in your local area eg consolidation or further specialisation?
- Do you believe that local school sixth form provision is sustainable in your area?
- Any other comments you wish to make on the review?
Please send these to the area review, with the title “Surrey area review” by Friday 26 February 2016.
Please could you copy your response to Frank Offer who is the Surrey County Council representative on the Surrey Area Review Steering Group.
Detailed guidance on the area reviews is also available.