Five gain accredited status;FE Focus

21st May 1999 at 01:00
FIVE colleges have become the first to achieve accredited status and will each receive a one-off payment of pound;50,000 to help share examples of good practice in the sector.

The Further Education Funding Council named the colleges as Blackpool and The Fylde, Greenhead (in Huddersfield), Havering (in Essex), Knowsley (in Merseyside), and Worthing Sixth Form college.

To achieve accredited status colleges must: show the existence of effective quality assurance; apply regular and rigorous self-assessment; set targets for institutional performance; demonstrate that student achievements are being improved; and take effective action to remedy any weaknesses in accountability.

Four of the colleges, Greenhead, Havering, Knowsley and Blackpoole and The Fylde, will be having a double celebration. Last week they were among 10 colleges named as beacons of excellence by Education Secretary David Blunkett.

Those awards also came with a pound;50,000 payment, again to spread good practice, and to help weaker colleges in their area. Although all the extra funding was welcome, there was some concern in the sector that the outside world would find the awards system confusing.

In addition to Mr Blunkett's beacons, the Association of Colleges also has a programme of Beacon Awards for good practice.

Jim Donaldson, the Further Education Funding Council chief inspector, said the criteria for accreditation was demanding, but they provided an incentive for colleges to raise standards. "We expect these five colleges to be followed by many others as more go through our second round of inspections," he said. "These colleges will be in the vanguard of a process that will significantly change the way we work with colleges."

In Wales, Coleg Llandrillo has won an award of pound;16,586 in recognition of the quality of its catering provision, plus a further pound;2,000 to share good practice with other colleges.

The size of the award reflects the volume of student learning in the programme.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today