‘A Newcastle-based education group will become the first in the country to be able to develop and award its own honours and masters degrees.
NCG, which runs Newcastle College and Sixth Form, has been granted Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Privy Council.
It puts the group on level footing with universities and means students in the city will have access to a wider ranger (sic) of degree level provision.
Joe Docherty, NCG chief executive, said: “Gaining Taught Degree Awarding powers is a landmark development for the sector. It’s a real breakthrough nationally and we are extremely proud to be leading the way for the whole of the further education sector.’
‘The ground-breaking development follows on from an intensive scrutiny process by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, who recognised that HE provision at Newcastle College provides a high quality offer to students equivalent to that of a university.
NCG say they will use their newly won powers to build on their strengths as a vocational higher education provider.
It will also support the Government’s increased focus on higher level apprenticeships and offer more opportunities for students from all backgrounds to progress into higher education.
Newcastle Central MP Chi Onwurah said: “This is a fantastic achievement for NCG and Newcastle College.
“Promoting fair access to higher education and giving local people more choice on where they want to study is vitally important. Our colleges sit at the heart of our communities providing many opportunities for people of all ages to progress into higher education and employment, as well as supporting local businesses through higher level skills and training.
“As chair of the APPG on Adult Education and a Newcastle MP I’ve seen first-hand how local colleges can vastly improve lives and support our thriving business community and regional economy.” ‘ (Chronicle Live)