College could be devastated by cuts

Fundraisers at Bow Street
Fundraisers at Bow Street

The Southern Regional College could be ‘devastated’ by cuts to Further Education provision, it has been claimed.

The Department for Employment and Learning (DEL) has issued its draft budget for 2015/16 which highlighted unprecedented reductions in places for learners at Further Education (FE) colleges alongside reductions in staff numbers.

Brian Doran, Chief Executive of the Southern Regional College said, “The proposed level of cuts, if passed on to colleges, will result in over 3,000 fewer places available across the region that is served by the Southern Regional College. 

“The reduction will have a devastating impact on continued opportunities for young people and adult learners alike. 

“The reductions will affect the College’s provision in full time further and higher education, skills training as well as our support through community outreach programmes. 

“If the Executive is serious about rebalancing and rebuilding the economy this will not be achieved without the necessary investment in our young people.  The importance of a vibrant and flexible further education sector should not be forgotten when the Executive sits down to finalise budgets.”