Tenth UTC closure announced

Yet another university technical college will close later this year, taking the total to 10 for the troubled programme.

Wigan UTC, which is rated ‘good’ by Ofsted but has had a chequered history, has announced it will shut at the end of August 2019 after failing to recruit enough students to become financially viable.

The college, a 14-to-19 institution with a vocational focus, opened in 2013 and planned to recruit up to 500 students, but it currently only has 108 on roll.

A spokesperson said the numbers were “not sufficient for the UTC to operate without a crippling deficit which will severely hamper the equality of education it can provide”.

As revealed by our sister title FE Week in January, Wigan UTC received a government bailout totalling £169,000 last year. Its deficit stands at £516,000, according to the 2017/18 accounts for its academy sponsor, the Northern Schools Trust.

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