Monday, June 04, 2007

FE colleges - the cinderella of education policy

My curiosity about the post-Blair future for public services led me to start reading Over to you, Mr Brown by Anthony Giddens - the guru of the Third Way.

It is a fairly interesting read supporting a move away from state monopolies in public services.

What disappointed me was that Giddens started to write about “universities and colleges” in the section on public services – but as you read on, it was clear that he wasn’t at all interested in further education colleges. He was only referring to higher education.

For him “universities and colleges” is all about universities teaching degrees courses. (Like at Cambridge University and the London School of Economics - where he worked.) What about the FE colleges that do so much to give learners skills for citizenship and for the workplace?

Giddens isn’t unique – the parties and the media often overlook FE and the hundreds of thousands of young people and adult learners in colleges.

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