£1m funding for free adult courses in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire

Funding of £1 million has been awarded to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority to deliver free Level 3 courses for adults across the region.

Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 4:55 am

The funding from the Department for Education is part of the Government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee and will deliver the courses for adults aged 24 or older who currently must either self-fund, take-out an Advanced Learner Loan to fund their learning or finance their learning through employer sponsorship.

A full Level 3 achievement is equivalent to two or more A-levels.

The funding includes 400 Level 3 qualifications in 20 sector subject areas which have been identified by the Government as beneficial for the economy, including: accounting and finance, agriculture, building and construction, engineering, health and social care, ICT, manufacturing technologies, medicine and dentistry, nursing and warehousing and distribution.

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Mayor James Palmer

The proportion of residents qualified to Level 3 across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is 60.1 per cent - higher than the national average of 58.5 per cent.

However, this falls to 49 per cent in Peterborough and 45 per cent in Fenland.

Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough James Palmer, who leads the combined authority, said:

“I have always been clear that I want to increase the proportion of residents upskilled to Level 3 because we know there is a strong correlation between Level 3 skills, productivity and social mobility.

“The gains for a Level 3 qualification equate to a 20 per cent increase in average wages and a 14 per cent increase in employment prospects.

“This funding will allow us to accelerate Level 3 delivery across the region, particularly within the growth sectors of our economy which will help us to build back after the pandemic.

“Key to achieving this will be how we target funding into deprived areas and incentivise colleges and providers to work with communities who need the most support.

“We want to ensure people have the qualifications they need to unlock their potential, wherever they are in the region.”

The list of 400 fully funded courses can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/qualifications-in-new-funded-offers.