Written by Paul

On the 19th April 2021, the UK government announced the next round of the College Collaboration Fund (CCF).

The CCF is a national programme of competitive grant funding that is available to all statutory Further Education (FE) providers. The purpose of the funding is to enable collaboration and sharing of best practices amongst colleges, to address common quality improvement priorities. This round of funding is for the 2021/2022 period, and applications for the funding need to be submitted to the Department for Education (DfE) no later than 5pm, 21st May 2021.


Here are our top 10 that you should be aware of for the new College Collaboration Fund

  1. The total fund for the CCF is £5.4m. Each application can apply for up to £500,000, and the expected minimum application will be for £100,000. Be aware that there is an expectation of 25% match funding from the applicant, meaning that if you put in for a programme of work for £200,000, the college will pay £50,000, and receive the remaining £150,000 in funding.
  2. You can still apply for this round of funding even if you have previously been successful in accessing previous CCF or SCIF funding
  3. Only FE providers can apply for this funding, and more than one college must be listed on their application. This must be made up of a lead college and a minimum of one other improvement partner college. The lead college must be Ofsted grade 1 or 2 (unless recently merged)
  4. There are 3 quality improvement themes for this round of CCF funding. These are
    • Quality of Education
    • Financial and Resource Management, and
    • Leadership and Governance

                   Your application must align to one of these 3 themes

  1. Remote and online learning feature heavily in this round of CCF funding. The learnings of the last year delivering during Covid-19 has shown that colleges need to have the resources to engage with learners remotely. This is referenced in the ‘Colleges and Covid-19 Summer Survey 2020’ report conducted by the Association of Colleges, which is referenced on the gov.uk funding website, clearly showing this is a focus point
  2. If successful, funding will be released from 18th August 2021, with all work having to be completed on your project by 31st March 2022
  3. In January 2021, the government released their whitepaper ‘Skills for Jobs: Lifelong Learning for Opportunity and Growth’. With employmability skills being a huge government focus to restart the economy coming out of Covid-19, this would also be a great focus point for any college project looking to attract CCF funding
  4. A list of previous CCF projects can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/college-collaboration-fund-ccf-projects
  5. Colleges are able to bring in support from third parties to deliver their CCF project. This is good news for any projects that require specialist skills (such as E-Learning development) or where college resources may be stretched to meet the timescales of the funding (think taking lecturers away from delivering learning to complete the CCF project – this may be difficult!)
  6. This is a great opportunity to improve your learning delivery, management, and leadership & governance for what is, in effect, a 75% discount! The window for completing applications is less than 5 weeks, so make sure to start on your application as soon as possible to ensure you submit your application in time. To access the application form, visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/college-collaboration-fund-ccf


Eidos Consulting were proud to be a delivery partner for a CCF project in the last round of CCF funding. Our project – to deliver 30 E-Learning modules in the key curriculum areas of Engineering, Childcare and Health & Social Care – was successfully delivered with a consortium of colleges led by Fareham College. You can read about the project here.