College blames government cuts for redundancies

Sunderland College has today announced that it intends to make 36 people redundant as part of a bid to save  £2.26 million in 2012/13.

The cuts have also led the college to review job descriptions for all teaching staff with a proposal to put in place a number of pay bands.

New descriptions, say the college, will be important to help secure long term future by delivering a more efficient curriculum model and bringing payscales in line with other colleges.

Angela O’Donoghue, principal of Sunderland College, said: “Due to government funding cuts, we have been required to undertake a review of our staff job descriptions and department structures to ensure that we can continue to deliver excellent education for our students.

“This extensive work has concluded the need to change both.

“Regrettably the impact of these cuts has meant that the changes we need to implement will lead to 36 redundancies.”

She added: “Following a meeting with unions and staff this morning to explain the situation we have released a Section 188 notice which will launch the 90-day formal consultation process while we work extensively with unions.

“This is a difficult decision and one that is not taken lightly as we know every member of staff works hard to make our college an inspirational and dynamic place for our learners.”

To reduce the number of compulsory redundancies, the college has announced a programme of voluntary redundancies.

However, they insist that the level of service to students and customers will not change.

The principal added: “The college’s vision has always remained the same despite the tough times in which we operate.

“We are a forward thinking education and training provider, dedicated to offering the very best for our learners to ensure they achieve outstanding results.

“I would like to reassure our students and customers that our service will not change; nor will they be affected in any way as a result of this, thanks wholly to the dedication and commitment of our professional staff, and the strategic plans we have in place to continually improve the college in the future.”

The college’s senior management team will now enter a 90 day consultation period with the Unions.

They have also met with every member of staff at risk, to ensure they are fully aware of their position during this course of action.