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Reducing poverty and increasing skills: the role of in-work provision
8 December 2017 by Connor Stevens

Reducing poverty and increasing skills: the role of in-work provision

As seems to be post-2015 norm, it’s been an eventful week in the world of politics and, as usual, the rumblings-on of Brexit seems to have drowned out other important happenings… So just in case you...Read more »

Little people matter too
1 December 2017 by Guest Blogger

Little people matter too

As far as I know Victor Hugo never wrote an apprentice into the story of Les Miserables but whilst I was reading Apprentice Pay – sticking to the rules I couldn’t help humming a few lines...Read more »

Getting a fair deal for apprentices
29 November 2017 by Dr Fiona Aldridge

Getting a fair deal for apprentices

As part of last week’s Budget, the Chancellor accepted the recommendations from the independent Low Pay Commission and announced an increase in the national minimum wage for apprentices from £3.50 to £3.70 per hour from April...Read more »

Extra time on Universal Credit – but the problems are just beginning
23 November 2017 by Tony Wilson

Extra time on Universal Credit – but the problems are just beginning

On page 160 of the Office for Budget Responsibility’s Economic and Fiscal Outlook is what is becoming a very familiar chart.  It shows the latest forecast for Universal Credit rollout and how these forecasts have changed...Read more »

Will the Levy run dry?
17 November 2017 by Stephen Evans

Will the Levy run dry?

The Office for Budget Responsibility is going to significantly downgrade its forecasts for the potential of the economy to grow – its overall speed limit. This is because growth in productivity (the amount that each worker...Read more »

Reflections on the Annual English, Maths and ESOL Conference
16 November 2017 by Alex Stevenson

Reflections on the Annual English, Maths and ESOL Conference

Last week, Learning and Work’s annual conference on supporting adults with English, maths and ESOL took place at UCL Institute of Education.  This major event – organised in partnership with UCL IoE, RaPAL, NATECLA and UCU...Read more »

Supporting transitions from ESOL to apprenticeships
15 November 2017 by Elizabeth Davies

Supporting transitions from ESOL to apprenticeships

Last week’s Annual Conference on English, Maths and ESOL was a great opportunity to hear more about the good work that adult literacy, numeracy and ESOL practitioners do, and the benefits this can have for learners....Read more »

Fixing Universal Credit – where to start?
10 November 2017 by Guest Blogger

Fixing Universal Credit – where to start?

A couple of weeks ago, on this blog, Tony Wilson argued that it was “time to pause UC…slow down and be prepared to change course”. He raised the issues of slow processing times for Universal Credit...Read more »

Inspired to achieve – Care Leavers Week special blog
27 October 2017 by Guest Blogger

Inspired to achieve – Care Leavers Week special blog

My name is Sam. I was a care leaver in 2011 who arrived on the shores of Swansea – then the beloved Swansea Metropolitan, to study Education (and transition to become a Primary School Teacher). The...Read more »

Education moves you forward – Care Leavers Week special blog
25 October 2017 by Guest Blogger

Education moves you forward – Care Leavers Week special blog

My name is Habib Rezaie. I came to the UK from Afghanistan in 2006 at the age of 16, as an unaccompanied asylum-seeking child. At age 12 I lost both of my parents and went through...Read more »

Providing tailored positive careers guidance to carers
24 October 2017 by Charlotte Robey

Providing tailored positive careers guidance to carers

Being involved in the Positive Career Choices work was really different.  I had never done anything like this before, and neither had the young people I support. It was really interesting.  We recruited a few champions...Read more »

How to ensure IAG for young adult carers is meaningful
24 October 2017 by Charlotte Robey

How to ensure IAG for young adult carers is meaningful

I would like to discuss the importance of information, advice and guidance around education and careers for young carers. Notice I haven’t said “tailored” in the above sentence? With good reason. It seems to me that...Read more »

More to do to engage adults with Advanced Learner Loans
23 October 2017 by Lauren Bennett

More to do to engage adults with Advanced Learner Loans

Although the recently published statistical first release on Further Education and Skills in England demonstrates concerning falls in apprenticeship starts and adult participation in Further Education including English and maths and Level 2 courses, there is...Read more »

Why we need to wake up to falling participation in adult basic skills
18 October 2017 by Alex Stevenson

Why we need to wake up to falling participation in adult basic skills

Normally, I’d rather watch an outstanding learner testimony to the impact of learning to read and write than delve into the 19+ English and maths participation statistics, but the most recent figures are compelling. Only not...Read more »

Are participation and achievement the same thing?
18 October 2017 by Mark Ravenhall

Are participation and achievement the same thing?

Last week’s further education statistics provided some thoughtful reading.  As a researcher who reads a lot of adult educational statistical reports from across Europe, I’m always impressed by the amount of statistical analysis we go into...Read more »

Apprenticeships Starts – The numbers behind the headlines
13 October 2017 by Paul Bivand

Apprenticeships Starts – The numbers behind the headlines

Unsurprisingly, yesterday’s apprenticeships data has made headlines for the wrong reasons – with 70,000 fewer people starting apprentices this summer compared with last summer.  As Stephen Evans said in his blog yesterday, it is too early...Read more »

Improving progressions from traineeships
13 October 2017 by Charlotte Robey

Improving progressions from traineeships

Data published this week show a dramatic fall in publicly funded adult learning. Headlines across the sector are focussing on the 61% drop in apprenticeship starts following the introduction of the Levy, but underneath this are...Read more »

Going down: the continuing falls in adult participation in learning
12 October 2017 by Stephen Evans

Going down: the continuing falls in adult participation in learning

The word disastrous is overused. But it feels apt when looking at the latest data on participation in learning by adults. Let’s start at the beginning. There are reports going back at least 200 years that...Read more »

Ethnicity & skills: figuring out the challenges, unlocking solutions
10 October 2017 by Dr Fiona Aldridge

Ethnicity & skills: figuring out the challenges, unlocking solutions

Launching the new Ethnicity Facts and Figures website today, Theresa May has challenged us all to ‘explain or change’ how people from different backgrounds are treated. Though the Prime Minister acknowledges that “People who have lived...Read more »

Universal Credit – why we need to stop, now
2 October 2017 by Tony Wilson

Universal Credit – why we need to stop, now

There are times when it can be hard to know where to start. With the debate on Universal Credit (UC) reaching a fever pitch in the run up to the Conservative conference this week, this feels...Read more »

Making the most of the public sector target
25 July 2017 by Elizabeth Davies

Making the most of the public sector target

Delivering three million apprenticeships by 2020 is a key priority for the Government and the Public Sector Target was established to ensure that the public sector is a model employer in this regard, leading by example...Read more »

In-work progression: understanding what works
16 July 2017 by Kathryn Ray

In-work progression: understanding what works

The publication of the landmark Taylor review last week heralds a welcome focus on the quality of work as well as the number of people participating in the labour market.  This shift in focus is vital to...Read more »

Work Local: It’s time to make devolution work
14 July 2017 by Tony Wilson

Work Local: It’s time to make devolution work

This week’s labour market statistics offered some rare good news for the government – with employment reaching new record levels and the unemployment rate touching a forty-year low.  The new Secretary of State, David Gauke, has...Read more »

Matching flexibility in work in the skills system
14 July 2017 by Dr Fiona Aldridge

Matching flexibility in work in the skills system

The UK has one of the most flexible labour markets in the world. Self employment is rising, as is part time working, and developments in technology have facilitated new business models and innovative forms of working...Read more »

Finding a way forward for part-time and flexible apprenticeships
12 July 2017 by Liz Davies

Finding a way forward for part-time and flexible apprenticeships

L&W welcomes the release of the Taylor Review of modern working practices, and while there is much of note in the report, we are pleased it specifically discusses recent changes that allow apprenticeships to be completed...Read more »

Cause for optimism following The Taylor Review
11 July 2017 by Dave Hagendyk

Cause for optimism following The Taylor Review

Whatever your political persuasion, The Taylor Review was probably always destined to disappoint some people in some way.  The response from the trade union movement in particular underlines the challenge it has had to bridge the gap...Read more »

IntoWork17 blog: Social justice for all must start with the most excluded
11 July 2017 by Guest Blogger

IntoWork17 blog: Social justice for all must start with the most excluded

By Sam Thomas, Policy manager at Making Every Adult Matter www.meam.org.uk For many people experiencing multiple needs, moving towards work is an important ambition. Achieving social justice requires a focus on those with the furthest to...Read more »

11 July 2017 by Guest Blogger

IntoWork17 blog: Think local: A new approach to over 50s employment support

An estimated one million people aged over 50 in the UK are involuntarily out of work.  Currently, employment support is not serving these people well – they are more likely to be workless, and more likely...Read more »

11 July 2017 by Guest Blogger

IntoWork17 blog: Diversity is being invited to the party, inclusion is being asked to dance.

To everyone’s relief and possibly to some’s disappointment, no Charleston dance moves or party hats were involved in this session. The limelight was on Steps Ahead Mentoring, a volunteering programme run by the CIPD, that aims...Read more »

11 July 2017 by Guest Blogger

IntoWork17 blog: Using data to investigate the causes and consequences of poverty for Londoners

Policy in Practice is tracking the changing living standards on more than 444,000 low income households across London. At IntoWork 2017 Deven Ghelani told delegates how, by combining housing benefit and council tax support data from...Read more »