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Skills for Life and The Spending Review

Skills for Life Network

The Spending Review – Government pledges continued support for numeracy and literacy, but ESOL funding for people not in settled communities is to be abolished

The Government has pledged to continue to support basic skills provision in order to ensure individuals are given the chance to gain basic numeracy and literacy skills. However, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) funding for people not in settled communities will be abolished in 2012.

Other key points from the newly published Comprehensive Spending Review document are :

  • The Further Education resource budget will be reduced by 25%, or £1.1billion, from £4.3 billion to £3.2 billion by 2014-15.
  • Spending on Adult Community Learning will be protected and reformed.
  • In recognition of the high economic returns to adult apprenticeships, the Government will boost spending on adult apprenticeships by up to £250 million a year by the end of the Spending Review period, relative to the level of spending inherited from the previous Government. This will create 75,000 additional places.
  • Train to Gain will be abolished. It will be replaced with an SME focused training programme.
  • The entitlement to free training for a first full level 2 qualification for those over 25 will be removed. Further education students aged 24 and over studying for a level 3 qualification (A-level equivalent) will be asked to pay fees. These students will be supported by the offer of a government-backed loan where repayments will be dependent on the learner’s income.
  • Further education students aged 24 and over studying for a level 3 qualification (A-level equivalent) will be asked to pay fees. These students will be supported by the offer of a government backed loan where repayments will be dependent on the learner’s income, protecting those with lower earnings.

To read the Comprehensive Spending Review document in full, visit the HM Treasury website. See pages 52 and 53 for relevant info.

Click here to read a comment from NATECLA on the Spending Review in relation to ESOL.

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