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PAC Report on Skills for Life

Key Documents
Skills for Life Network

The House of Commons Public Accounts Committee has today published its report on Skills for Life

The Report contains three sections:

  1. The effectiveness of Skills for Life in improving the skills of the population
  2. The quality of learning provision
  3. Reaching people who need to improve their skills

and identifies ten key conclusions and associated recommendations. Some main findings are that:

  • The quality of learning is still too low and a more skilled teaching workforce is the key to improvement.
  • There is a risk of ‘mission drift’ in that more than half of the qualifications in the first three years of the Skills for Life strategy were gained by 16 to 18 year olds.
  • More than two million of the 2.4 million people taking up courses by July 2004 undertook them in further education. Other training, such as through community groups, has been very slow to build up.
  • People in low-skilled employment are a large group whose needs are not being met.
  • Jobcentre Plus has to focus on getting people into jobs, but starting a job should not mean that a person has to give up learning.
  • People whose first language is not English should be encouraged to learn so that they can participate fully in work and civil society.
  • Problems of continuity of learning when prisoners move between prisons or are discharged into the community have gone on for far too long.

You can view the report in full on the House of Commons publications website.

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