Government guidance

Here you can find the latest Government guidance for colleges. This page will be updated as further information is published.

16 to 19 tuition fund guidance (24/07)

DfE have published guidance to accompany the announcement of the allocation of a £96 million catch-up fund for 16 to 19-year-olds.

Key points of interest:

  • Ring fenced for 16 to19 small group tuition over and above planned hours of study for 2020/21 in English, maths or other courses where learning has been disrupted
  • Allocation of £150 per instance based on allocation for full time students in 2020/21 without grade 4 or above in English and or maths at age 16. Part time students will receive a pro-rate allocation.
  • Colleges must accept or decline the additional funding once allocations are confirmed
  • Colleges must publish a statement explaining how the funding will be used in line with the guidance and record the use of funding

2019-20 adult education budget allocations update (23/07)

ESFA has published new information on how it will settle 2019-20 adult education budget allocations. You find the full agreements here and our response here.

Free college meals (10/07)

There will be various funding announcements in the next few days. On Friday DfE announced that ESFA will add £73 per funded free college meal student to college allocations in August 2020 to cover the cost of meals over five weeks. This money is repayable in the autumn if not used. Details are here.

Department for Education September reopening guidance (03/07)

The Department for Education published guidance yesterday to support colleges to fully reopen in the autumn. DfE has also made some marginal updates to its July guidance but has maintained the general prohibition on a return for adult learners for now. We circulated a detailed note in yesterday’s daily coronavirus briefing but it is particularly worth noting:

  • the requirement to update risk assessments and controls.

  • the points on specific curriculum areas (eg hairdressing, music).

  • the advice that dedicated public transport can operate on different rules.

  • the explanation of how health protection agencies will get involved if there are virus outbreak.

Learners with SEND - reopening guidance

In addition to the Guidance for Further Education and Skills Guidance the Government has produced guidance for full opening: special schools and other specialist settings which, while written primarily for special schools, does have some messages relevant for those working with specialist groups in colleges.

Students with SEND whether or not they have an EHC plan who are following mainstream learning programmes should be included in their regular learning cohort although they might require an individual risk assessment and some additional preparation and support.

SEND students with more complex needs who are taught as a discrete group should as far as possible work within their own bubble although they can work with wider groups for specialist teaching. Wherever possible social distancing should be maintained although it is recognised this might not always be possible all the time with students with the most complex needs.

Curriculum should include some teaching in how to continue working remotely to prepare for possible further periods of lockdown.

PPE is only likely to be necessary in a very small number of cases and should be sourced either from the college or via the Local Authority.

In a few cases it is recognised that students might need an extension to their EHC plan in order to follow an individualised support programme for a term or half term to ensure transition to their next placement. This has to be agreed through a review with the Local Authority. Students currently in their final year of a Supported Internship who require some additional time to move into employment can also have a short extension funded by ESFA.

Wherever possible specialist transport should reflect the bubbles which are adopted within the college. Decisions about specialist SEND transport will need to be made in partnership with Local Authorities. The DfE will shortly provide new guidance to Local Authorities on specialist transport.

Vulnerable young people
Staff should be particularly vigilant to new and additional safeguarding concerns and continue to work with Social Workers or other relevant safeguarding and welfare partners.

Mental health and wellbeing
College staff should be alert to the needs of students or staff who might need additional mental health or wellbeing support and provide this either in house or through referral to relevant agencies.

Managing school premises during the coronavirus outbreak

Guidance for managing school premises has been issued by DfE and includes information that colleges might want to consider when thinking about what the reopening of their buildings will look like.