Skills reform

Pilot areas for £65m Strategic Development Fund announced


The Department for Education has revealed the pilot areas for the new Strategic Development Fund.

The £65 million fund, first mooted in the Skills for Jobs white paper, went to tender in April.

Eighteen winners have now been announced, of which eight will be Local Skills Improvement Plans trailblazer and development fund pilot areas.

The remaining ten will just be piloting the development fund, which the application guidance stated is intended to “begin building the local collaborations that will create a stronger and more efficient overall delivery infrastructure and support a more co-ordinated offer across the local area”.

The pilots will also “support the development of a high-value curriculum offer in support of longer-term skills priorities” in a local area and “strengthen the relationship with employers”.

Sixty per cent (£38 million) is meant to be spent on capital and 40 per cent (£27 million) is for revenue, and this money must be used by March 2022.

Eight employer representative bodies have also been announced as LSIP trailblazers today.

See the full list of joint-trailblazer and development fund pilot areas, and solely development fund pilot areas, below.


Joint Trailblazer and Development Fund pilot areas

Pilot area Collaboration members Endorsing Employer Representative Body College Business Centre
Weston College Bath College, City of Bristol College, Gloucestershire College, Hartpury College, South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, University of West of England and Yeovil College Business West Chamber of Commerce No
Lakes College Cumbria Carlisle College, Furness College, Kendall College and Cumbria University Cumbria Chamber of Commerce Yes
Barnsley College Barnsley College, Sheffield College, RNN Group, DN Colleges Group, University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, Linkage College, Thomas Rotherham College and Oakwood High School, Sheffield Hallam University, Landmarks College, Mears Group Aspire/Igen Doncaster Chamber of Commerce No
Loughborough College Leicester College, SMB Group, North Warwickshire & South Leicestershire College, Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport & Physical Activity, Leicester and Rutland Sport East Midlands Chamber of Commerce Yes
Mid-Kent College EKC Group (East Kent Colleges) and North Kent College Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce No
The Education Training Collective Hartlepool College of FE, Middlesbrough College, Darlington College, Teesside University, Learning Curve Group, Tees Valley Collaborative Trust and Queen Elizabeth SFC North-East England Chamber of Commerce No
Myerscough College Blackburn College, Blackpool & the Fylde College, Blackpool SFC, Burnley College, Cardinal Newman College, Lancaster & Morecombe College, Nelson & Colne College Group, Preston’s College, Runshaw College and West Lancashire College North and West Lancashire Chamber of Commerce No
Chichester College Bexhill College, BHASVIC, College of Richard Collyer, East Sussex Colleges Group, Greater Brighton Met College, Plumpton College and Vardean College Sussex Chamber of Commerce No



Development Fund only pilot areas

Pilot area Collaboration members Endorsing Employer Representative Body College Business Centre
Cheshire South and West Cheshire College South and West, Warrington and Vale Royal College, Macclesfield College, Reasheath College and Priestly College West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce Yes
Derby College Nottingham College, Burton and South Derbyshire College, The University of Derby and Nottingham Trent University East Midlands Chamber of Commerce Yes
Fareham College Isle of Wight College, Havant and South Downs, Eastleigh College, Blackburn College, Southampton City College, Highbury College Portsmouth, Portsmouth College, Itchen College, Barton Peveril College and Lighthouse Learning Trust Hampshire Chamber of Commerce Yes
Halesowen College Halesowen College, Dudley College of Technology, Walsall College, Sandwell College, City of Wolverhampton College Black Country Chamber of Commerce No
Milton Keynes College South Central Institute of Technology, Open University, Cranfield University, Learning 2050 and Milton Keynes Artificial Intelligence (MKAI) Milton Keynes and Northants Chamber of Commerce Yes
Tech Partnership Grimsby East Riding College, University of Hull, Bishops Burton College, DN Gorup, Selby College, Wilberforce Sixth Form College, Grimsby Institute of F&HE, Hull College, Modal Training Ltd and Scarborough TEC Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce No
Telford College Herefordshire, Ludlow and North Shropshire College, Shrewsbury Colleges Group and SBC Shropshire Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise Ltd Yes
Truro & Penwith College Cornwall College Group Cornwall Chamber of Commerce Yes
Warwickshire Colleges Group Coventry College, North Warwickshire & South Leicestershire College, Solihull College and University Centre Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce No
West Nottinghamshire College West Notts College, Chesterfield College, RNN College Group, Lincoln College Group, Futures, Inspire East Midlands Chamber of Commerce No

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