Humberside

Hull College Group staff start two-day strike

Picket line outside college
Image caption Members of the University and College Union are holding a two-day strike

Staff at three Yorkshire colleges have taken industrial action in a row over plans to axe 231 jobs.

Hull College Group, which runs colleges in Hull, Goole and Harrogate, has started a restructuring plan to deal with a £10m deficit.

Members of the University and College Union (UCU) are holding a two-day strike in Hull and Harrogate.

The college said it had plans "to minimise any disruption these actions will cause to our learners".

More on this and other stories

Julie Kelley, from the UCU, said that staff felt they had "been left with little choice" but to strike.

"These job cuts would be devastating for staff, students and the local community," she said.

"We urge the college management to put an urgent stop to these plans and work with us to explore better alternatives which protect jobs and learning opportunities."

In a statement, Hull College said: "The unions are aware that dialogue is ongoing, with further meetings taking place next week, and the new management team appointed last summer will remain focused on resolving the group's serious financial issues."

Image caption Hull College has three main centres in Hull, Goole and Harrogate

Concerns have also been raised by the UCU about the future of Hull's School of Art and Design.

Ms Kelley said the decision to change the content of foundation degrees and cut student teaching time could lead to the loss of specialist staff.

"If you're an 18 year old now and you're maybe wanting to do ceramics, for example, you're not going to chose a foundation degree that's general in nature - you are going to go somewhere where you can do a specialist ceramics degree," she said.

The college said the art school was not facing closure and the new foundation degrees were "recruiting well".

"Students can still achieve a BA Degree by completing a one-year top-up course with us," the college said.

"Tuition will continue to be provided by specialist staff."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites