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Education / Union devastated after UHI Shetland confirms job losses

THE UNION representing lecturers at UHI Shetland have described the loss of 13 jobs through voluntary redundancies as “devastating”.

Responding to the news that the college had more or less achieved its savings target of £2 million, the EIS-FELA union said the loss of almost 150 years of lecturing experience from further and higher education in Shetland was “irreplaceable”.

In an interview with Shetland News on Thursday, UHI Shetland principle Jane Lewis confirmed that there would be no compulsory redundancies, while two departments would merge into one new section, the community learning centres would close, and a number of courses would be removed.

More details in the link below: 

UHI Shetland to lose 13 staff as budget cuts are made

EIS-FELA branch secretary Andrew Anderson also doubted the number of students affected by the changes. “The job cuts are devasting with almost 150 years of lecturing experience and skills being lost to Shetland – this is irreplaceable,” he said.

“We are very concerned with the statement that only a relatively small number of students, around 40, would be affected by the changes – for the learning centres alone the number is 80 and on top of that you have the administration, accounting, business, ESOL, maths and skills for work courses that have been lost.

“We agree the funding model for colleges should be reviewed but the chronic under funding of colleges also needs to be looked at and college principals and college boards can play a crucial role in putting pressure on the Scottish Government to do this – this could be done without the need for waiting on the first minister to visit Shetland.

“It is ironic that the distant islands allowance has only become an issue since we were taken out of local authority control and effectively privatised”.

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