Richard Holden MP has welcomed the announcement that Derwentside College in Consett, North West Durham will benefit from over £420,000 to upgrade its facilities.

Derwentside College in North West Durham is one of just 180 further education institutions that has been allocated a share of a £200 million Government investment to repair buildings, renovate campuses and upgrade facilities. This funding is a clear demonstration of our commitment to transform our further education sector as we deliver on our mission to levelling up.

Today’s funding comes from the £200 million announced by the Prime Minister in June as part of his New Deal for Britain, helping the nation bounce back from coronavirus by investing in infrastructure and skills, and creating jobs. We have brought forward this funding from the £1.5 billion investment the Chancellor pledged in our last budget to upgrade the further college estate over the next five years.

For too long, further education has not received the attention it rightly deserves in providing students of all ages with the opportunities and training that can lead to high skilled and well-paid jobs. In our ambitions to transform post-16 educational opportunities, we have introduced high-quality apprenticeships and are rolling out our ground-breaking T Level qualifications from next month.

Further education colleges play a pivotal role in their communities, transforming regions by unlocking talent, building skills and helping put people on the path to a meaningful job; and this new investment is part of our efforts to give further education the resources and investment it needs, and in doing so, creating a world-class educational route that stands on parity with our fantastic higher education system.

Investing in education was a key promise made by the Conservatives during last year’s General Election. The £200 million allocated to upgrade our colleges this year is on top of a £1.5 billion investment we have committed to transforming our further education system.

Commenting, Richard Holden MP said:

“I am delighted that Derwentside College be receiving £422, 366. Further education plays a vital role in unlocking talent and potential of thousands of young people, and those returning to education once again, in local communities both in North West Durham and across the country.”

“This funding will ensure our colleges have the investment and resources it needs to deliver a world-class further education system, that will open up opportunity and deliver a workforce that will help get Britain back on its feet”

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson said:

“We want to build a world-class further education system which delivers for the whole nation, and a key part of this is ensuring colleges are fit for the future – with better facilities and brand-new buildings.

It is brilliant news that more than 180 colleges will receive a share of £200 million so they can start immediate work to renovate buildings and facilities, with further funding being invested over the next 5 years.

We want all students to continue to receive high-quality education and training, no matter where they grow up or what college they go to. Now more than ever, it is vital that colleges can support their students to gain the skills they need to progress and help the economy to recover and grow”

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