Advertisement

Further Education Colleges in the United Kingdom: Providing Education for Other People’s Children

Reference work entry
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)

Abstract

Further Education (FE) colleges have existed in towns and cities throughout the United Kingdom (UK) in some form for well over a century. They bear similarities with American Community Colleges and Australian TAFE colleges, but they are characterized by their diversity and by the breadth of their curriculum, which includes vocational, academic, and higher education courses. Their primary role has, however, always been the provision of work-related courses, mainly for young people. Despite their size and apparent significance, FE colleges are often poorly understood by policy makers who have had little if any experience of these institutions which cater mainly to the less privileged in society. This chapter provides an overview and an analysis of FE colleges in all four nations of the UK, but it focuses mainly on England. It examines the history of these colleges to explain their very local roots, and it finds continuity in what has determined how colleges have developed up to the present day. English FE colleges have been subject to frenetic policy initiatives since the 1990s, and despite their ostensible independence they have been more and more tightly managed by central government agencies. The present juncture is an important one for the sector as FE colleges in the UK are currently facing major challenges due to sweeping cuts in funding. Yet, even if they have little control over their own future, FE colleges have continually demonstrated an extraordinary capacity to adapt and survive, mainly by providing individual students with the courses they choose to follow.

Keywords

Curriculum for FE college Design of FE colleges Further Education (FE) Further Education (FE) colleges Teachers of FE colleges 

References

  1. Ainley, Patrick, and Bill Bailey. 1997. The business of learning. London: Cassell.Google Scholar
  2. Association of Colleges (AoC). 2015. College key facts 2015–2016. London: Association of Colleges.Google Scholar
  3. Association of Colleges (AoC). 2016. College key facts 2016–2017. London: Association of Colleges.Google Scholar
  4. Avis, James, and Kevin Orr. 2014. The new professionalism: An exploration of vocational education and training teachers in England. In International handbook of research in professional and practice-based learning, ed. Stephen Billett, Christian Harteis, and Hans Gruber, 1099–1124. New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  5. Avis, James. 2009. Education, policy and social justice: Learning and skills. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  6. Avis, James, and Kevin Orr. 2016. HE in FE: Vocationalism, class and social justice. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 21 (1–2): 49–65.  https://doi.org/10.1080/13596748.2015.1125666.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bailey, Bill, and Lorna Unwin. 2014. Continuity and change in English further education: A century of voluntarism and permissive adaptability. British Journal of Educational Studies 62 (4): 449–464.  https://doi.org/10.1080/00071005.2014.968520.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bathmaker, Ann-Marie. 2001. Neither dupes nor devils: teachers’ constructions of their changing role in further education. Paper presented at conference of the learning and skills research network, Robinson College, Cambridge, UK. 5–7 December.Google Scholar
  9. City and Guilds. 2014. Sense and instability: Three decades of skills and employment policy. London: City and Guilds.Google Scholar
  10. Coffield, Frank, Sheila Edward, Ian Finlay, Ann Hodgson, Ken Spours, and Richard Steer. 2008. Improving teaching and learning, skills and inclusion: The impact of policy on post-compulsory education. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  11. Colley, Helen, David James, and Kim Diment. 2007. Unbecoming teachers: Towards a more dynamic notion of professional participation. Journal of Education Policy 22 (2): 173–193.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Daley, Maire, Kevin Orr, and Joel Petrie. 2015. Further education and the twelve dancing princesses. London: IOE Press.Google Scholar
  13. Education and Training Foundation (ETF). 2014. Further education workforce data: Analysis of the 2012–2013 staff individualised record data. London: ETF.Google Scholar
  14. Education and Training Foundation (ETF). 2015. Further education workforce data: Analysis of the 2013–14 staff individualised record (SIR). London: ETF.Google Scholar
  15. Education and Training Foundation (ETF). 2016. Further education workforce data: Analysis of the 2014–15 staff individualised record (SIR). London: ETF.Google Scholar
  16. Elliott, Geoffrey. 1996. Educational management and the crisis of reform in further education. Journal of Vocational Education and Training 48 (1): 5–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Foster, Andrew. 2005. Realising the potential: A review of the future role of further education colleges. London: DfES.Google Scholar
  18. Gleeson, Denis, Jenifer Davies, and Eunice Wheeler. 2005. On the making and taking of professionalism in the further education workplace. British Journal of Sociology of Education 26 (4): 445–460.  https://doi.org/10.1080/01425690500199818.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gleeson, Denis and Shain, F.arzana. 1999. Managing ambiguity: between markets and managerialism – a case study of ‘middle’ managers in Further Education. The Sociological Review 47 (3): 461–490.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Grainger, Paul, Chris Wilderspin, Joanna van Heyningen, and Tony Pilcher. 2015. Space and place: Colleges rebuilding. In The coming of age of FE? ed. Ann Hodgson, 112–135. London: Institute of London Press.Google Scholar
  21. Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). 2014. Higher education in England: An analysis of latest shifts and trends. Bristol: HEFCE.Google Scholar
  22. Hillier, Yvonne. 2006. Everything you need to know about FE policy. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  23. Hodgson, Ann, Bill Bailey, and Norman Lucas. 2015. What is FE? In The coming of age of FE? ed. Ann Hodgson, 1–24. London: Institute of London Press.Google Scholar
  24. Keep, Ewart. 2006. State control of the English education and training system: Playing with the biggest train set in the world. Journal of Vocational Education and Training 58 (1): 47–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Keep, Ewart. 2014. What does skills policy look like now the money has run out? London: Association of Colleges.Google Scholar
  26. Keep, Ewart. 2016. The long-term implications of devolution and localism for FE in England. London: Association of Colleges.Google Scholar
  27. Kennedy, Helena. 1997. Learning works: Widening participation in further education. Coventry: Further Education Funding Council.Google Scholar
  28. Learning and Skills Council (LSC). 2005. Learning and skills- the agenda for change: The prospectus. Coventry: LSC.Google Scholar
  29. Lucas, Norman. 2004. Teaching in further education: New perspectives for a changing context. London: Institute of Education.Google Scholar
  30. Maxted, Rebecca. 2015. Critical pedagogy in FE. In Further education and the twelve dancing princesses, ed. Maire Daley, Kevin Orr, and Joel Petrie, 37–48. London: IOE Press.Google Scholar
  31. OECD. 2014. Skills beyond school: Synthesis report. Paris: OECD Publishing.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Orr, Kevin. 2012. The end of ‘Strategic compliance’? The impact of performativity on teachers in the English further education sector. In Performativity and education: ethnographic cases of its effects, agency and reconstructions, ed. Bob Jeffrey and Geoff Troman, 199–216. Stroud: E&E Publishing.Google Scholar
  33. Orr, Kevin. 2016. The filling in the educational sandwich: Post-compulsory education. In Post-compulsory teacher educators, ed. Jim Crawley, 16–23. St Albans: Critical Publishing.Google Scholar
  34. Petrie, Joel. 2015. Introduction: How Grimm is FE? In Further education and the twelve dancing princesses, ed. Maire Daly, Kevin Orr, and Joel Petrie, 1–12. London: IOE Press.Google Scholar
  35. Smith, Rob. 2015. Building colleges for the future. What the ugly sisters have to tell us about FE. In Further education and the twelve dancing princesses, ed. Maire Daley, Kevin Orr, and Joel Petrie, 91–106. London: IOE Press.Google Scholar
  36. Stanton, Geoff, Andrew Morris, and Judith Norrington. 2015. What goes on in colleges? Curriculum and qualifications. In The coming of age of FE? ed. Ann Hodgson, 68–88. London: Institute of London Press.Google Scholar
  37. Thompson, Ron. 2009. Social class and participation in further education: Evidence from the youth cohort study of England and Wales. British Journal of Sociology of Education 30 (1): 29–42.  https://doi.org/10.1080/01425690802514318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. UCU. 2014. The funding of further and higher education. http://classonline.org.uk/docs/The_funding_of_higher_education.pdf. Accessed 22 Jan 2016.
  39. Walker, Martyn. 2013. Encouragement of sound education amongst the industrial classes: Mechanics’ institutes and working-class membership 1838–1881. Educational Studies 39 (2): 142–155.  https://doi.org/10.1080/03055698.2012.686694.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Wolf, Alison. 2015. Issues and ideas, heading for the precipice: Can further and higher education funding policies be sustained? Report for the Policy Institute at King’s College. London. http://www.kcl.ac.uk/sspp/policy-institute/publications/Issuesandideas-alison-wolf-digital.pdf. Accessed 17 Oct 2016.

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Education and Professional DevelopmentUniversity of HuddersfieldHuddersfieldUK

Personalised recommendations