• Pressure mounts on Hinds to explain £500m apprenticeship 'alleged overspend'

    The chair of the influential education select committee has urged the government to be “open and transparent” about a projected £500 million overspend on this year’s £2 billion apprenticeships budget, after the education secretary dodged a question about it in parliament yesterday. Robert Halfon asked Damian Hinds to confirm the figure – first raised by

    10.08 Dec. 18th, 2018 | News

  • Give nursing degree apprenticeships special treatment, education committee urges

    The NHS will not meet its apprentice recruitment target unless nursing degree apprenticeships are given special treatment, an influential group of MPs has warned. The education select committee’s report, ‘Nursing degree apprenticeships – in poor health’, based on its inquiry over the summer, was published today. It highlighted a series of obstacles to the delivery

    0.01 Dec. 6th, 2018 | News

  • Revealed: vast majority of loans-only providers are less than good

    A massive 80 per cent of providers that only deliver provision funded by advanced learner loans have been rated less than good by Ofsted, FE Week analysis has revealed. But despite this “shocking” statistic – which covers provision worth millions and affects thousands of learners – the education watchdog was tight-lipped on whether it was

    9.36 Nov. 30th, 2018 | News

  • Kick poor-performing new providers off RoATP, education committee urges

    Poor-performing apprenticeship providers should be kicked off the government’s register – not just barred from taking on new starts, the education select committee has urged. It made the call in its new report, ‘The apprenticeships ladder of opportunity: quality not quantity’, published today, based on the findings of its recent inquiry. The report outlines a

    0.01 Oct. 8th, 2018 | News

  • In pursuit of parity: degree apprenticeships expand into the Russell Group

    Although seen by some as controversial, degree apprenticeships are central to the government’s plans to put technical education on a par with academic education. The Department for Education has repeatedly referred to the number of Russell Group universities signed up to the register of apprenticeship training providers as a sign that it’s succeeding in this

    11.48 Sep. 28th, 2018 | News

  • DfE in firing line with former skills minister for ‘misrepresentation’ and 'discourtesy'

    Chair of the education select committee Robert Halfon has accused the Department for Education of misrepresentation and discourtesy. Yesterday afternoon the DfE published a blog, aimed at journalists, that claimed the former skills minister gave inaccurate apprenticeship figures in an interview with the BBC Today programme that morning. Mr Halfon says this clearly misrepresented what

    17.50 Aug. 23rd, 2018 | News

  • Ofsted criticised for allowing college mergers to be excuse for turning a blind eye to failure

    The chair of the influential education select committee has called on Ofsted to “learn the lessons” from Learndirect, after an FE Week investigation found failing colleges that still hadn’t been visited by the education watchdog a year after they merged. Mid-Cheshire College, rated ‘inadequate’ for the second time in a row in May 2017, merged

    7.00 Aug. 3rd, 2018 | News

  • Halfon pleads for nursing apprenticeships to be 'special case' with levy spending

    The education select committee chair has pleaded for nursing apprenticeships to be made a “special case” with flexibility over levy spending. But skills minister Anne Milton told him in a special session this morning – dedicated to investigating what is holding up their roll-out – that this could not be done. It comes after FE Week reported

    14.44 Jul. 17th, 2018 | News

  • 'Preferred' Social Mobility Commission chair wants 'complete overhaul' of FE

    The government’s preferred candidate to chair the Social Mobility Commission has told MPs that the FE sector needs a “complete overhaul”, and reviewing vocational education would be one of her key priorities. Dame Martina Milburn appeared before the education select committee this morning. She made it clear that she is not impressed with the FE

    12.04 Jul. 11th, 2018 | News

  • Careers and Enterprise Company agrees to publish board minutes

    The Careers and Enterprise Company has responded to savage criticism from MPs over secrecy by finally agreeing to publish its board minutes. Its chair Christine Hodgson and chief executive Claudia Harris were grilled in May over the CEC’s lack of transparency, during a bruising appearance before the Commons education select committee, where CEC was called an “over-bloated quango”. The

    8.00 Jul. 9th, 2018 | News

  • Ex-minister calls subcontracting fees 'scandalous', but DfE has 'no concerns'

    The government has for the first time concluded they have “no concerns” about subcontracting fees, despite more than 10 providers charging an average of over 30 per cent last year, FE Week can reveal. This is completely at odds with the view of the last skills minister Robert Halfon, who now chairs the education select

    9.39 Jul. 6th, 2018 | News