Our colleges and adult education providers are underfunded and unloved.
Education opens up opportunities, shows us what we are capable of and challenges our preconceptions. When education is accessible it can be a great equaliser.
And our economy is changing. Half of the current working population will need to retrain during their career. Businesses warn that too few workers have the necessary skills to meet the needs of the future economy. If we do not invest in further and adult education, the UK will be left behind.
We demand better.
The right to an education, to learn new skills, to nurture creativity and to develop one’s talents is for everyone of every age.
At our Autumn Conference, we were excited to pass our new policy, ‘Education is for Everyone’. We want to save our colleges and start a revolution in lifelong learning.
That’s why we will:
- Raise the rate for 16-19 education, so that sixth forms and colleges are paid the same amount per pupil as secondary schools;
- Introduce the ‘Young People’s Premium’: extending the Liberal Democrats’ flagship Pupil Premium policy to college students;
- Scrap the learning tax, by refunding the VAT colleges pay and giving them money to afford a pay rise for teachers;
- Give everyone a Personal Education and Skills Account to help them pay for education and training in later life – at least £3,000 three times over the course of their adult life, from age 25.
If we want to build a fair society, then education must be for everyone, no matter what life stage they are in. This is how Liberal Democrats will build it.
To read the motion in full click here: