Having worked on a new funding framework for several months, DfE/ESFA has recently determined that community learning (aka tailored learning) courses are eligible for funding where the intent is to support health & wellbeing, improve confidence or strengthen connections to the wider community. 

Learning purely for “leisure”, however, is not eligible for funding, the implication being that any courses which are not designed around these types of outcomes must be supported through fee paying. 

This is a largely helpful development for adult community learning providers who are likely to be designing courses in this way already. A lot of existing provision will remain eligible. 

Challenges remain, however, in terms of how the new guidance will be implemented and what it means for: 

  • Funding from the Mayoral Combined Authorities – with over 50% of the adult education budget now coming from them rather than the ESFA. Will they adopt a similar approach to the broader curriculum? 
  • Course design for arts and humanities courses – how will the outcomes framework affect the learner experience? Will “learning for learning’s sake” become the preserve only of those who can afford fee paying courses? 
  • Learner pathways – how will the new outcomes framework encourage learners to progress – and where to? And how will the challenges facing arts and humanities subjects in other parts of the education system, impact on participation in adult learning? 

The event will take place on Teams on Thursday 18 April from 1-2:30pm. 

To reserve a free place, please register here. This webinar will explore these issues from the point of view of arts and adult education practitioners and advocates.

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