National shortfalls in the provision of some further education courses could jeopardise the Further Education Funding Council's statutory commitment to ensure "sufficient and adequate provision", the council's annual strategic analyses will reveal.
The FEFC is planning to "investigate further" potentially serious shortfalls of courses in construction, engineering, catering and health and community care, identified in the 1998 national analysis of colleges' strategic plans and three-year financial forecasts to be published at the end of January.
Overall, the 1998 analyses, the first time colleges' strategic planning information is considered alongside financial forecasts, will find "there are sufficient and adequate facilities for FE". But "there are concerns about particular areas of provision", an FEFC circular has warned. "In future, some colleges may have to rationalise further their provision to cope with efficiency squeezes."