Adult education

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Content published before December 2016

This page highlights some of the current parliamentary material available on adult education and basic skills. This includes select committee reports, briefing papers on current legislation and other subjects produced by the parliamentary research services, and the latest Early Day Motions put down by MPs.

Commons Briefing Papers

09.11.2016Technical and Further Education Bill [Bill No 82 of 2016-17]
The Technical and Further Education Bill 2016-17 sets out provisions to improve the quality of technical education (TE), address skill shortages and support the Government's social mobility agenda. The Bill's proposals will: rename the Institute for Apprenticeships the "Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education" and extend its remit to cover technical education, create an insolvency framework for FE corporations and sixth form colleges and extend the statutory duty to provide information on FE to cover providers of FE who receive funding from the combined authorities. The Bill implements recommendations from the Government's Post-16 Skills Plan and the consultation on developing new insolvency regime for the FE sector.
04.11.2016Post-16 Area Reviews
This briefing provides information on the area reviews of post-16 education and training announced by the Government in July 2015.
16.09.2016Adult further education funding in England since 2010
A summary of how funding for adult further education (including apprenticeships) in England has changed since 2010.
04.05.2016Immigration Bill 2015-16: Lords amendments and ping-pong stages
The Immigration Bill 2015-16 is currently in ping-pong stage. This Commons Library briefing paper gives an overview of the latest developments with the Bill.
07.03.2016Constituency Casework: Training
This note provides Members of Parliament and their staff with information related to frequently asked questions from constituents about training.
30.11.2015Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015: a summary
Updated analysis of the Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015.
28.11.2012Education: Historical statistics
The organisation of every stage of education has undergone significant change over the last century. These changes have fundamentally altered most aspects of education. Historical indicators are therefore particularly interesting, but also problematic. Very few series are consistent over more than a few decades. The definition/size of different stages of education (primary, secondary, further/higher), school leaving ages and examinations have changed markedly as have state organisation and funding. As key concepts in education change so do the types of statistics collected. The increased role of the state in the first half of the 20th century also widened the scope of official education statistics.
28.04.2011Changes to funding for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses
The purpose of this note is to outline the current debate on funding for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses and to summarise changes in policy in this area. ESOL funding has been subject to a series of changes since 2007 when automatic fee remission was removed. This note provides background on these changes, comments on the relevance of proposed changes with regard to the ongoing debate on social cohesion and integration and highlights Parliamentary debate on this issue.
19.01.2009Adult Education
10.12.2007Education and Skills Bill, Bill 12 of 2007-08
Education and Skills Bill. (Bill 12 of 2007/08). House of Commons Library Research Paper 07/87.

Lords Library Notes

12.10.2015Availability and Quality of Apprenticeships, and the Spread of Apprenticeships across the Labour Market
This Library Note provides statistical information on apprenticeships, based on the most recent figures published by the Skills Funding Agency (SFA). It then focusses on four key areas of recent government policy development in relation to apprenticeships: the announcement of a government target of three million new apprenticeships by the end of March 2020; the development of new apprenticeship standards


19.10.2015Trends in ICT
This note looks at developments in information and communication technology (ICT) and their relevance for UK policy in the next five years. It examines the capability, use and economic impact of ICT; technical barriers; and implications for cybersecurity, privacy and internet governance.

Select Committee Reports

18.03.2009Re-skilling for recovery: after Leitch, implementing skills and training policies.
Government response. Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills; Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Select Committee report [Commons]
14.01.2009Skills for Life: progress in improving adult literacy and numeracy.
Public Accounts Committee report [Commons]
15.12.2008Re-skilling for recovery: after Leitch, implementing skills and training policies.
Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Select Committee report [Commons]

Early Day Motions

That this House is aware that lifelong learning changes and enriches people's lives by its support for self confidence, health and well-being, it being also a powerful driver in aiding ...
That this House supports ARRO's All for Education campaign to give ex-offenders a fair chance in access to educational courses and also access to the professions in the UK; calls for ...
That this House expresses its concern over prospects of severe and disproportionate reductions in funding for adult lifelong learning; notes the public statements in support of the ...
That this House notes the proposal by the Executive of Kings College London as part of its budget review process to abolish the Chair of Palaeography, the only one of its kind in the ...
That this House notes that Tower Hamlets College is planning to make 40 full-time lecturers redundant and cut classes including 1,500 places on English for Speakers of Other Languages ...


  • Commons Briefing Papers (CBP) Papers providing in-depth and impartial analysis on every major piece of primary legislation and on other topics of public and parliamentary concern. Regular statistics papers are also published.
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POSTnotes (POST PN) - proactive four-page policy briefings from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology based on reviews of the research literature, interviews with stakeholders and peer review, commissioned by the POST Board
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - authored publications by the research section of the House of Lords Library that provide analysis of Bills, subjects for debate in the House and other issues of interest to Members.
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses