• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The incorporation of the further education sector in 1993 was followed by a period of extreme turbulence. Colleges plunged into the complex task of managing huge organizations while under pressure from cuts in funding and a steady expansion in the number and range of students. While financial scandals may have attracted attention, the success of the further education sector in continuing to provide a vital educational service for millions of people has been less recognized. Despite the significant contribution of the sector to education and training, practitioners struggle to find adequate research evidence on which to base reflection and practice. They need material relevant to the specific situation of managers working w

The Diverse Sector
The diverse sector
The Wider Context

When asked in 1999 if someone walking round his college would see much that had changed since five years ago, a Director of Curriculum replied ‘yes’ and ‘no’. There has been a massive amount of change in the further education (FE) sector in the UK leading to jokes like that of Tierney (1998, p. 2) that the only thing that has not changed is that ‘Parking is still in short supply’. Despite the turbulent change, walking around any college, a visitor would see some continuity with what has gone before, classes being taught, workshops, meetings. On the other hand, as the Director indicated, there would be differences:

The whole ambience of the place is different … The college now ...

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