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Further Education: Student Wastage

Volume 460: debated on Wednesday 9 May 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what analysis has been carried out to ascertain the main reasons why students in further education in each of the regions dropped out of their courses in each of the last three years. (132184)

The Department has commissioned research to ascertain the main reasons why students drop out of their further education courses. The report, 'Reasons for Early Leaving from Further Education and Work-based Learning Courses', assesses the reasons for course drop-out and identifies policy mechanisms that might reduce non-completion. The report does not include analysis at a regional level.

This research is due to be published at the end of June 2007. It will be available from the Department's research website

The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) undertake a regular national learner satisfaction survey (NLSS) involving learners studying on a range of programmes in further education, work-based learning and adult and community learning. This survey provides an overview of delivery and satisfaction with education and training in England among learners aged 16 and over. The survey also analyses reasons for early leaving.

In 2004-05 the most common reasons for early leaving were, being on the wrong course (15 per cent.) and health reasons (13 per cent.) Other key reasons related to tutor, assessment and quality of teaching issues (12 per cent.) 10 per cent. left to commence employment.

The findings can be found in the publication, located and by looking at the further education report.

Each LSC region will conduct analysis and commission research to understand issues and concerns specific to them. Analysis of learner data and characteristics are undertaken as part of each region's strategic analysis activity to inform planning and commissioning decisions.