Harlow College

Recent events have shown that despite ‘increased’ funding in FE, the sector still remains the most fraught.

Harlow College

Staff at Harlow College are currently embroiled in a long-running and bitter feud with the College’s principal regarding revised working conditions and pay. This has led to half of them taking redundancy. Blame has been apportioned but as of yet Government has refused to interfere.
Most seriously, this shows you how College industrial relations deteriorate despite success and international renown. FE Colleges are currently in limbo. They are neither business nor educational establishment and as a result can be treated with the disdain and disrespect shown at Harlow and other colleges. ESOL is another area which is now the target for reform and has become the new battleground. Unlike schools, FE and, to an extent, HE are subject to the whims of the market and any changes in market fortunes have a dramatic effect. Their safety net isn’t wide so many experienced, well-qualified members of staff lives are made a misery whilst wondering if they’ll keep their job or be forced to endure the humiliation of reapplying for their hard-earned jobs.
The current government talk a good game when it comes to the importance of FE to skills, 14 – 19 year olds and the adult learner but in reality they are unfairly treating staff as they aren’t willing to secure a stable and harmonious working environment.

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