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Adult Education: Finance

Volume 508: debated on Monday 29 March 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment he has made of the effect on deaf and hearing impaired people of the Learning and Skills Council’s decision to reduce funding for adult further education, including qualifications in British Sign Language by £200 million in 2010-11. (324734)

The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) are responsible for the funding of further education (FE) and skills training for adult learners aged 19 and over.

The Skills Investment Strategy (November 2009) set out measures that would make £340 million of efficiency savings in the 2010-11 financial year. Despite these savings, investment in adult participation budget will be £3.5 billion in 2010-11 financial year: an increase of 2.9 per cent. compared with 2009-10 financial year.

Within the total investment, we have committed to maintaining funding for the same volumes of learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities as a priority group of learners. This may include individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. It is for FE colleges and training organisations to determine their offer to these learners in line with their level of need.