Birmingham College of Food confirms restructure with 'small number' of roles at risk
Birmingham College of Food has confirmed it is in the process of restructuring and has commenced a consultation with "a small number of staff" at risk of redundancy.
The exact number of possible redundancies is not yet known but the restructure affects other areas within University College Birmingham, not only the College of Food.
According to the University and College Union (UCU), 73 senior lecturer roles are at risk of redundancy across the whole university at a time when it is creating 42 new lower graded lecturer posts. It also said lecturer job descriptions have been changed to reflect "a huge increase in workload", with proposals for non-negotiated changes to pay and grading structure.
UCU said it would have a "detrimental effect on all staff as well as the student experience" and that it will "vigorously oppose both the need to make job cuts and the process being used to effect this".
A statement from University College Birmingham said: "We are currently in the process of restructuring our Birmingham College of Food at University College Birmingham, in the same way as many other colleges and universities are re-evaluating their departments as they navigate a rapidly changing further and higher education landscape. This is imperative to allow us to modernise the curriculum, and ensure our students receive the most relevant, best value teaching and learning experience.
"Under the experienced watch of our new head of department, Kali Davidson, we are making important changes to ensure our students flourish in today's food and hospitality industry and have even stronger employment outcomes. As with any restructuring, this does come with some changes, and a small number of staff will be at risk of redundancy. The exact number is not known at the moment as we have just commenced a consultation exercise.
"We may have some vacancies for lecturing staff within the college of food in due course, and our alumni would, of course, be welcome to apply. And we should point out that the restructuring is across a range of areas within the university, not just Birmingham College of Food, in order to refresh areas of our curriculum and clarify roles and responsibilities.
"Our Birmingham College of Food continues to thrive, and it is wonderful to see our training restaurant open to the public again, making sure it's another successful year, with a fantastic cohort of students about to graduate."
Kali Davidson was appointed head of department at the College of Food in November 2020. The institution offers a range of specialist courses, from professional chef training to culinary arts management or bakery and pâtisserie, with college, undergraduate and postgraduate courses available.