Hills Sixth Form College receives funding from the Department of Education

On 10 November, The Department for Education announced a £200 million funding boost to support a variety of areas in the country to offer training opportunities to meet local skills needs. It is part of a government drive to level-up the country, get more people into good jobs close to home, plug skills gaps and grow the economy.

Hills students performing biology experiment

What is the Local Skills Improvement Fund?

The Local Skills Improvement Fund aims to enable collaborations between further education colleges and training providers to meet the needs of various employers identified in an area’s Local Skills Improvement Plan. Hills Road Sixth Form College has been fortunate to receive part of this national fund.

We’re really pleased to be part of this collaborative national fund. We’re working together with FE College partners in Cambridge and the wider region focusing on meeting the skills needs of the area and plugging the skills gaps. This funding will enhance our ability to deliver industry-specific technologies and capabilities that will help to make our students brilliant employees in the economy of the future

Jo Trump, Principal

We’re excited to announce that the College will be using the money provided by the Local Skills Improvement Fund to enhance students' knowledge whilst providing them with industry-relevant experience as part of their studies and increase the frequency to which they interact with employers.

Firstly, we will Create a new teaching laboratory to support the delivery of the latest addition to our A levels - Environmental Science. Alongside this, some of the funds will be used to purchase digital microscopes and soil, water and air pollution testing equipment. This investment is incredibly timely because a variety of green sectors continue to be vital to the regional and national economy.

The College will also invest in equipment to support the delivery of A level Biology. This will enable our Biology students to gain invaluable experience in industry-wide research techniques, such as electrophoresis. This will equip all our Biology A level students with the knowledge, skills and practical experience that are widely used in the biomedical and life science industries, which are so vital to our local community and economy.

We also plan to invest in Virtual Reality equipment which will be used to enhance teaching and learning across a whole range of A levels. This state-of-the-art technology will be used to collaborate with employers and other stakeholders to create immersive and realistic experiences for students. This will undoubtedly help prepare them for higher education, employment and a whole range of other life experiences.

We’re really looking forward to seeing how much all these improvements will benefit our students.

We are delighted to have secured monies from the Local Skills Improvement Fund. We know already, from independent analysis, that our students leave us well-prepared for the next stage in their lives. These funds will enable us to make investments into equipment that will further enhance the readiness of our students to take part in higher education study and employment in fields that are key to the local economy – the green sector, advanced manufacturing, digital and life sciences.

Ian Pryer, Assistant Principal