Tertiary Colleges Group
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The Tertiary College Group represents 22 Colleges across England. Amongst these Colleges are a high number of the most successful Colleges in the country. The Group was formed in order to recognise and promote the unique role of Tertiary Colleges and their place in the further education system. Tertiary Colleges provide all or a significant majority of the education and training for 16-19 years olds within their local authority area (where all or most of the publicly funded schools focus on 11-16 provision). Some of our members are formally defined as Tertiary Colleges; others have self defined themselves as such through the range of 16-19 provision offered and the size of the 16-19 cohort. They achieve high standards of performance in A level provision and in applied and vocational programmes, including apprenticeships.

Tertiary Colleges offer, within one institution, readily accessible pathways of progression from foundation level to level 3 qualifications and beyond, across a wide range of subjects and skills sectors. They promote personalised programmes for young people and adults alike, enabling individuals to combine academic and vocational studies. The breadth of offer and the opportunity for individuals to fulfil their potential by moving from lower to higher levels of programmes are a key characteristic of Tertiary Colleges.

In addition, our Tertiary College members are major players in the delivery of the 14-19 curriculum and the establishment of the new diplomas. They have developed long and successful partnerships with schools and other providers, championed local collaboration and are key members of Local Authority 14-19 Strategic Partnerships. They are proponents of best practice local tertiary arrangements.

In addition to their considerable portfolio of 16-19 provision, Tertiary Colleges are important providers of adult education and training. They play a major role in developing employer responsive provision, working closely with business and industry to meet their demands and local, regional and sometimes national skills needs; they have successfully delivered the Train to Gain initiative and will be key in supporting individuals and businesses through the recession.

Where a tertiary system exists, significant indicators include high staying on rates and achievement post 16, and well developed strategic relationships with the Local Authority, which span economic developments and community partnerships as well as the more obvious education and training collaborations. Inspection reports evidence the strengths of Tertiary Colleges.

Tertiary Colleges are therefore at the heart of their local community and play a key role in providing outstanding academic and vocational provision, improving skills, developing economic prosperity and promoting social cohesion. Our members are committed to inclusion, widening participation and to high achievement for all students. Tertiary Colleges are key to the delivery of the plans of two Government Departments: the Department of Children, Schools and Families, and the Department of Skills, Universities and Skills.

The Tertiary College Group comprises 22 Colleges. Its main purpose is to promote the work of Tertiary Colleges to the Government and other key stakeholders. The Tertiary College Group aims to ensure that Tertiary Colleges are appropriately represented in policy formulation and consultations. It wishes to play a role in the development of major Government initiatives by giving a Tertiary College perspective. Recent examples of the Group's activities include representation in working groups to assist in the recovery of the LSC's Capital Build programme and in consultation with the Local Government Association's REACT team to work through the new responsibilities for Local Authorities under the Machinery of Government changes.

For more information about the work of the Tertiary College Group, please contact: Denise Vaughan, Tertiary College Group Administrator, by email: d.vaughan@stanmore.ac.uk or by phoning 0208 420 7742.