NAEGA response to

'Success for All, Reforming Further Education and Training'

The full text of the document 'Success for All' is available electronically on the DfES website at

The NAEGA response to the Department for Education and Skills proposals for a new strategy for learning and skills was sent in at the end of September 2002.

NAEGA welcomes this strategy to 'build success for all our learners, our communities and the economy'. Since 1982, NAEGA has been championing the needs of adult learners. Our main role is to support our members in the delivery of guidance to adults for both learning and work.

NAEGA is therefore, very concerned about the lack of any reference to the need for guidance in the document. There are a number of references to the need for such support (e.g. page 5 'workforce skills and career development has often been neglected') butno recommendations about how to reduce that neglect.

Interestingly, the first goal given is 'Meeting Needs, Improving Choice'. Part of that need is clearly to encourage adults to make effective choices in learning, yet there is no reference to this type of support elsewhere in the section. It should also be noted that guidance not only ensures that adults make appropriate choices but will aid retention and increase demand for learning.

Much of the delivery of guidance to adults is based in the community, which means that guidance workers are in a position to identify and encourage those adults with basic skills needs to become involved in learning.

Goal 3 (Developing the Teachers and Leaders of the Future) does again not mention the need to encourage and train people to deliver guidance to adults. There is a massive shortfall in qualified and experienced staff to take on the expansion that is needed to help in achieving Government targets for basic skills, HE and workforce development. At
present there are no schemes to support this training.

It is also noted that the major Government initiative in guidance for adults, the Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) Partnerships are not mentioned anywhere in the document. The IAG Partnerships have done a great deal of work since April 2000 to encourage the delivery of quality
services to adults. The IAG Parnerships are, however, limited to financially supporting only the delivery of information and basic advice. For guidance, a 'cocktail' of short-term funding from ESF, LLSC LIF, local authority and lottery grants is used. This means great amounts of time devoted to bid writing and also does not allow the career structures to be put in place to attract staff.

NAEGA September 2002