Adult residential courses will retain their funding uplift for at least the 2021/22 academic year, the Department for Education has confirmed.
Officials began reviewing the uplift, which multiplies funding for residential courses by nearly five times as much as the normal rate, in February 2020.
Four residential adult education colleges in England are affected by the decision and have been eagerly awaiting the outcome.
When asked for an update this week, a spokesperson for the DfE could not say when the final decision about funding in future years would be made, simply telling FE Week that it would be in “due course”.
However, they did confirm that the residential funding uplift will “remain in place for the 2021/22 academic year”.
The four colleges – Northern College in Barnsley, Fircroft College in Birmingham, Ruskin College in Oxford, and Hillcroft College in London – will technically be funded by their respective combined authorities if they are based in areas with devolved adult education funding.
Yultan Mellor, principal of Northern College, which was facing a battle to survive earlier this year partly owing to the national review, said: “Northern College is pleased to report that, through working closely with us over the last year, Sheffield city region have agreed to continue with the residential uplift for the next three years, and West Yorkshire and the Education and Skills Funding Agency for at least the 2021/2022 academic year.”
A Fircroft College spokesperson told FE Week that it was “working closely with the West Midlands Combined Authority to find a long-term solution for the sustainable funding of residential adult education in the West Midlands”.
Ruskin College and Hillcroft College did not respond to requests for comment at the time of going to press.