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ERIC Number: ED498635
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Pages: 36
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
The Impact of European Funding on Mainstream Learning and Skills Council Provision. Research Report
Kirk, Gordon; Fletcher, Mick
Learning and Skills Network (NJ1)
This report summarizes the findings and conclusions from a study designed to identify how European funding supports Learning and Skills Council (LSC) priorities and contributes to LSC targets. The study was carried out between November 2005 and May 2006, and had the three following main components: (1) Consultants examined questionnaires representing the views of 37 local LSCs, which described their approach to the use of European funds. They also analyzed 561 tender specifications to help them understand the objectives of LSC staff. (2) Regional workshops were organized for LSC and provider representatives. One workshop in each region covered strategic issues and the broad aims of European funding; others focused on one or more of four specialist areas agreed with the LSC as being particularly important. (3) Finally, an analysis of individual learner record (ILR) data was undertaken to identify the characteristics of learners enrolled on European Social Fund (ESF) programs and the organizations offering such provision. All findings in this study relate to ESF programs. Among the key findings: Stakeholders reported that the introduction of co-financing had led to a closer alignment between ESF and LSC priorities. Nevertheless, respondents found it easier to describe how ESF funding contributed to general priorities than how it contributed to detailed targets. In terms of both expenditure and planned outcomes, ESF funding contributed most to workforce development and employer engagement; just over a third of expenditure and outcomes pertained to these closely related areas. The report concludes by noting that ESF programs make a significant contribution to qualification outcomes, many of which relate directly to LSC targets. The clearest links are with "Skills for Life" targets and adult workforce development. It is also possible to make a strong case for an indirect contribution to targets through improving capacity and helping to improve learner readiness. Any reduction in ESF, therefore, would have serious implications for the capacity of the Learning and Skills Council to meet its targets. It appears from the research that ESF-supported activity and mainstream activity often operate quite separately. The LSC needs to consider what it could do to ensure better links and transfer of good practice. Summary data is appended. (Contains 17 figures and 7 tables.) [This publication was produced by the Learning and Skills Network, London, UK.]
Learning and Skills Network. Regent Arcade House, 19-25 Argyll Street, London, W1F 7LS, UK. Tel: +44-845-071-0800; Fax: +44 20 7297 9001; email: enquiries@LSNeducation.org.uk; Web site: http://www.lsneducation.org.uk
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Learning and Skills Council, Coventry (England).
Authoring Institution: N/A