The names of the 21 colleges selected to receive funding as Maths Centres of Excellence have been revealed.

The centres are designed to test and share new ways to teach students who are re-sitting their maths GCSEs, and will share £40 million over the next five years.

The programme will be expected to design new and improved teaching approaches, develop teaching resources, build up teachers’ skill and spread best practice through maths networks.

Plans for the centres were first announced in last year’s Autumn Budget to improve the quality of basic maths provision for low attaining post-16 learners.

David Hughes, chief executive of the Association of Colleges, welcomed the announcement “not just of additional funding, but of the recognition that colleges are best placed to support people to achieve the skills they need to be successful in work and in life.”

He added: “However, we are in the middle of a teacher recruitment and retention crisis. If we want to keep great teachers teaching, government needs to not just focus on teacher development, but teacher pay – and that requires proper investment in colleges.”

Colleges were eligible to apply to become a Maths Centre of Excellence in May if they had at least 250 students with prior attainment in GCSE maths that is below grades 9-4.

At the time, the Department for Education said the programme would work “through trialling pedagogical approaches and sharing this expertise across the post-16 sector.

“At this stage, we expect that the centres could be grant funded with a minimum of £140,000 per annum and up to a maximum of £300,000 per annum, depending on the total number of centres that the panel wishes to fund and the quality of the agreed plans.”

If the £40 million funding is divided equally, each of the 21 institutions will receive over £38,000 a year for each of the five years.

The 21 colleges selected are:

New College Stamford, Lincolnshire

Leicester College

Cambridge Regional College

Harlow College, Essex

Leyton Sixth Form College, London

Newham College of Further Education, London

Christ the King Sixth Form College, London

Gateshead College

Lakes College West Cumbria

Tameside College

Nelson and Colne College, Lancashire

Fareham College, Hampshire

East Kent College

Greater Brighton Metropolitan College

Weston College of Further and Higher Education, Somerset

City College Plymouth

Newcastle and Stafford Colleges Group

Warwickshire College Group

Leeds City College

Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education, Lincolnshire

Wilberforce College, Hull

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  1. Congratulations to all of the successful colleges. From a bystander’s perspective it is surprising to see some of the colleges listed given their historic very weak performance in GCSE maths. I recognise that the selection process was rightly not derived from outcomes alone but the badges of excellence, whilst delivering 9-4 (A*-C) GCSE maths pass rates in the teens, sits uneasy.