Responding to the Augar Review of Post-18 Education and Funding

Ruth Spellman, CEO of The WEA, said: “We are pleased to hear that the review believes post-18 education should be a lifelong experience available to all, irrespective of age, situation or income. 

“The introduction of the lifelong entitlement is welcome as it signals that adult and community learning is important and that the review is looking broader than young adults.  

“We are glad the review acknowledges the real-term decline of AEB and that the funding changes have created a barrier to both social mobility and productivity and welcome the recommendation to address this by restoring full funding for the first ‘full’ Level 2 qualification, for those who are 24 and over and who are employed.

“We of course would want to see help for adults wanting to get into learning below level 2 to ensure there is a pathway to progression for all adults, especially disadvantaged students, ESOL students and those currently not in work. Unless the entry point is supported too then people still might not take the first step - building confidence and learning to learn.  

“What we now look for in the implementation of Augar’s Review is more freedom and flexibility for all adults. It is essential that people realise the opportunities that this will bring to the economic growth of this country if we engage the most disadvantaged in learning and make sure they are not left behind.”