THE Heart of Worcestershire College, which has a centre in Redditch, has announced it is to make ‘efficiency saving’ redundancies across its three sites.
It is not yet clear in which areas the cuts will be, but any reductions in staffing levels are likely to impact the student learning experience.
Dr Rebecca Stewart, regional support official of the University and College Union said: “HoW College is consulting unions on plans for up to 28 compulsory redundancies from nine areas distributed across the college’s sites to plug a huge hole in the budget brought about by severe funding cuts and fierce competition for learners.
“All campus unions are working with management to try and minimise the job losses and look for alternatives.”
Fears surrounding redundancies have been circulating ever since an Ofsted report in April this year highlighted poor teaching standards at the HoW College, which has a campus on Peakman Street in Redditch.
The report said the college ‘Requires Improvement’ across the board, from its quality of teaching, learning and assessment to outcomes for learners and personal development, behaviour and welfare.
It also branded attendance rates at the college as too low, particularly in maths and English and said the actions of leaders and managers to improve teaching, learning and assessment had ‘not yet led to consistently good teaching across subjects, provision types and levels’.
Spokesperson for HoW College, Anne Daniel said: “The continued budget reductions in the further education sector are still forcing colleges across the country to make efficiency savings. In addition we are facing increased competition from schools as well as a demographic decline in the area.
“For HoW College these efficiency savings are small and in isolated areas. We are fortunate that we have not been forced to make more significant savings unlike many other colleges in the sector.
“We will continue to deliver high quality provision for all our learners.”