Shane Chowen

  • It's time for the devolved authorities to lead on skills

    Central government agencies have failed to produce a successful skills policy – now it’s time for the devolved authorities to take over, argues Shane Chowen Next to reforming technical education and apprenticeships, the devolution of the adult education budget to newly elected Metro-Mayors is up there as one of the most disruptive policy agendas in

    5.00 Jul. 10th, 2017 | Opinion

  • FE deserves a seat at the Brexit table

    We still don’t know what Brexit will look like, but as FE has so much skin in the game, it deserves a say in talks This week marks one year since the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union, a toxic time in our political and democratic history. Perhaps the divisions are still

    5.00 Jun. 20th, 2017 | Opinion

  • What will replace the European Social Fund?

    After Brexit, the government must replace the £500 million provided every year by the European Social Fund for people in disadvantaged circumstances, says Shane Chowen It’s only been a month since that windy Tuesday morning when the prime minister announced that the country will face a general election on 8 June. When parliament resumes on

    5.00 May. 15th, 2017 | Opinion

  • Apprenticeship outcomes: how do we know what they are?

    Reporting on outcomes will not be mandatory, which risks undermining the status and quality of apprenticeships, says Shane Chowen Back in November, when I first wrote about the Technical and Further Education Bill, it had only just begun its journey through the Houses of Parliament. By the time this goes to press, the bill will

    12.00 Feb. 27th, 2017 | Opinion

  • It's time we talked about lifetime learning

    Almost a year ago George Osborne used his budget speech to commit the Government to a review that, at the time, many of us hoped would catalyse a comprehensive national conversation about the role of adult learning in modern Britain. The signs were good, with the budget report containing this eminently sensible promise: “As working

    5.00 Jan. 24th, 2017 | Opinion

  • The government must go much further with reforms

    The Technical and Further Education Bill is a good start, but it needs to address structural problems that will hold us back in world trade, says Shane Chowen. In the wake of the vote to leave the EU, the economic aftershocks are beginning to be felt. Economists still forecast a rise in unemployment – albeit

    9.00 Nov. 5th, 2016 | Opinion

  • Up Pompeii

    Shane Chowen looks into the fallout for FE from the Brexit vote. I wanted to start my column this week with the line ‘now that the post-referendum dust has settled’ but, much like Pompeii in 79 AD, the country will be beset with poor foresight and a somewhat toxic atmosphere for some months to come. At

    17.00 Jul. 1st, 2016 | Opinion

  • Nobody wants iron curtains

    Shane Chowen explains why he thinks Lord Sainsbury’s review of technical and professional education should avoid old solutions to new challenges. If FE Week’s timings are correct, this ought to be my penultimate column before the publication of Lord Sainsbury’s review and the government’s ‘continuing revolution’ of technical and professional education. I can’t be the

    15.00 Jun. 3rd, 2016 | Opinion

  • Setting the scene for a devolved future

    Shane Chowen looks at how the upcoming local elections and devolution could affect FE. More than 475 elections will soon be taking place throughout the UK, with thousands of candidates trying to reach millions of voters. I was a candidate in a by-election in Milton Keynes last year (I lost). It’s exhausting, but also exciting, because

    13.00 Apr. 30th, 2016 | Opinion

  • Welfare reforms impact on our students

    Shane Chowen calls for greater recognition of the impact welfare cuts will have on FE students. The parliamentary process isn’t one that lends itself to straight forward explanation at the best of times. But when complicated and contentious pieces of legislation work their way through Westminster, it’s all to easy to get caught up in

    9.00 Mar. 7th, 2016 | Opinion

  • Guest reporter Shane Chowen heads to Switzerland

    On the 18-21 June I’m taking a four day break from being Policy Officer for IfL, and will be in Switzerland for a ‘study and media trip’, reporting exclusively for FE Week Each day I will be posting snippets from the trip on this web page, so stay tuned. Also follow the #FEweekontour hash-tag ———————————————————————————————————————

    12.42 Jun. 15th, 2012 | Opinion