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Northern College Barnsley

Question for Department for Education

UIN 160672, tabled on 1 March 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to help ensure the future sustainability of residential provision at Northern College in Barnsley.

Answered on

4 March 2021

Due to concerns with Northern College’s future financial situation, the Further Education Commissioner undertook a diagnostic assessment of the college on 15 and 16 February.

Recommendations in the Commissioner’s report will include actions the college needs to take to explore structural change in order to secure a sustainable delivery model. The Commissioner and the Education and Skills Funding Agency will work with the leadership at Northern College as they consider these options and their plans for improving the financial stability of the college. They will also work with both combined authorities to ensure they are closely sighted on steps taken to try and secure a sustainable financial future for the college.

Northern College receives the majority of its funding through the Adult Education Budget (AEB). This budget will be devolved to Sheffield City Region Mayoral Combined Authority and West Yorkshire Combined Authority from August 2021 and it will be for the two combined authorities to agree the value of the AEB that Northern College will receive. This income will be key to the financial sustainability of the college.

The specific steps the department will take will emerge over the next few weeks and officials will ensure that both combined authorities are kept informed.

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Interests declared
The Member has declared that they have interests which may be relevant to the subject matter of this question.