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Home > News > October 2006 > 23 October 2006

Learning & Skills Council publishes progress report

The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) has launched a new progress report entitled 'Delivering Learning and Skills'.

The report looks at the learning and skills sector over the past 12 months and details what the LSC has spent its money on and the results of this investment.

According to the report, more people are completing courses and achieving qualifications. The LSC says success rates have risen by 2.6 per cent to 73.8 per cent in further education and work based learning.

Delivering Learning and Skills also reports an increase in the number of people taking Level 2, 3 and Apprenticeships. This includes a 9.4 per cent rise in the number of adults taking Level 2 qualifications. The number completing their Apprenticeship increased by 31 per cent between 2003/04 and 2004/05.

Other findings include:

* Adults taking part in basic literacy and numeracy training as part of the Skills for Life strategy increased by 22.3 per cent - a total of 1.275 million adults have now received basic skills training.

* The Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA), which provides financial assistance for training young people, saw a take-up rate of 82 per cent in its first year.

Mark Haysom, chief executive of the LSC said: "Delivering Learning and Skills is a ringing endorsement of the impressive progress made by the sector. At a time when we are facing a number of important challenges, our unique progress report demonstrates that the FE system has done an excellent job, both in reducing skills shortages and meeting targets."

"That said, there are still big challenges ahead and further work is needed to meet them. In our forthcoming Annual Statement of Priorities, we will outline the priority areas we will focus on over the coming year. Learning and skills are the cornerstone of the economic and social well-being of the country and so we have to strive to deliver better and better performance every year to ensure we achieve our goal to make England better skilled and more competitive."

Bill Rammell, minister for further, higher education and lifelong learning said: "This Government has increased Further Education funding, delivered through the LSC, by 48 per cent since 1997. Together we are driving towards implementing a truly demand-led system by 2010 based on genuine partnership between employers and educators.

"The newly restructured LSC is delivering the skills businesses say they need working closely with the FE sector. Next week we will announce the ongoing funding strategy for the LSC and the strategic planning to support it in its essential role underpinning our sweeping reforms to skills and FE in this country."

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