The strike ballot for sixth form colleges closed on 16 September and five out of six members voted to take action – 84 per cent of members voted Yes to action and Yes to saving the sixth form college sector. Following that ballot, NEU members in sixth form colleges took strike action on three days in October and November 2019.
It has not been possible to resolve the dispute with the Secretary of State, so National Education Union members working in 34 sixth form colleges will be taking strike action on Wednesday 12 February, Thursday 27 February and Tuesday 10 March (the day before Budget day).
There is currently an overall £700 million shortfall in funding for Post 16 education.
Teaching staff numbers and support staff posts have fallen significantly due to the real-terms cuts, while at the same time student numbers have risen. This is putting the future of sixth form colleges under serious threat. If the crisis continues to go unaddressed, it is students’ education that will continue to suffer.
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List of colleges taking strike action:
Ashton Sixth Form College
Brighton Hove and Sussex Sixth Form College
Cheadle and Marple Sixth Form College
City & Islington Sixth Form College
Coulsdon Sixth Form College
Gateway Sixth Form College
Havering Sixth Form College
Hereford Sixth Form College
Hills Road Sixth Form College
King Edward VI College – Nuneaton
King Edward VI College Stourbridge
Long Road Sixth Form College
Longley Park Sixth Form College, Sheffield
Newham Sixth Form College
Notre Dame Catholic Sixth Form College
Peter Symonds College
Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College
Richard Huish College
Shrewsbury Colleges Group
Sir George Monoux College
St Brendan’s Sixth Form College
St Francis Xavier Sixth Form College
St John Rigby RC Sixth Form College
The Blackpool Sixth Form College
The Brooke House Sixth Form College
The Sixth Form College Solihull
Thomas Rotherham College, Rotherham
WQE and Regent College Group