Liverpool city region to invest £57.7m in adult skills

More than 30,000 people across Liverpool city region will get access to skills training during the next academic year in an investment worth £57.7m. Tony McDonough reports

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Liverpool City Region Combined Authority will invest £57.7m into skills


Liverpool City Region Combined Authority will invest £57.7m to train 30,000 adults in the next academic year.

In what it claims is its largest-ever investment in adult skills training, the CA will spend £54m with further education colleges, local councils and independent providers. £3.7m will fund free level 3 (A-level equivalent) training for people earning under £30,000 a year.

Adult Skills Funding (ASF) – formerly the Adult Education Budget – has been devolved to the Combined Authority since 2019. Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram says he wants the training to meet the skills needs of local employers.

“Lifelong learning is an issue that is incredibly close to my heart, not least because I know the life-changing impact it can have on a person’s life,” he said.

“It helped to take my career on a journey that I would never have thought possible, from bricklayer, to Parliament and now Mayor of the region I love. I want to give as many people as possible that same chance.

“Since I became Mayor, we have invested hundreds of millions of pounds into adult education.

“This latest announcement is our biggest investment yet and will help to give tens of thousands more residents access to the support and training they need to build a successful career for themselves. It’s proper levelling up in action.”

The budget provides around two thirds of the funding each year to grant-funded providers such as colleges and local authorities and the remaining third via contracted providers delivering in a current five-year commissioning cycle.

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It also sets aside funding through the pioneering Test and Learn programme which allows the Combined Authority to experiment with new projects.

This approach in the past has included courses to train FE tutors, engage refugees and asylum seekers in practical English and green skills for the construction industry.

During 2022/23, the ASF supported 35,480 students with 75% of learners living in disadvantaged areas.

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