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The Scottish Funding Council (SFC) has worked with the college sector to map out a national approach for developing a plan to guide future investments in college buildings and infrastructure. 

The approach is laid out in a new strategy published today. Recognising the urgent need for significant investment, the strategy expresses an ambition for a high quality, technologically advanced and sustainable learning environment for college students. It describes a set of guiding principles which include equitable access to digital learning, collaboration with other education providers, and the need to create a positive experience for students.  

The strategy responds to changes in the way colleges now operate, including the accelerated uptake of digital and hybrid learning opportunities brought about by the pandemic. It cites other changes in the environment for college education such as long-term projections for the decline in the proportion of young people in the population. In line with the Scottish Funding Council’s recently published Net Zero and Sustainability Framework, the strategy also takes account of the need to respond to the climate emergency. 

Today’s publication paves the way for the development of an infrastructure investment plan which will include a revised process for allocating capital funding as well as detailing required investment on a college by college basis. 

The Scottish Funding Council’s Director of Funding, Richard Maconachie, said:

“Alongside universities, colleges are fundamental to the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of our country, and we need to ensure they are able to fulfil that role in a well-managed and sustainable way.”

“This is a significant milestone in a programme designed to provide us collectively with an investment plan that is transparent, well thought out and able to respond to the future needs of Scotland’s college sector.” 

SFC’s College Infrastructure Strategy: The approach to delivering Scotland’s College Infrastructure Plan is available from today.