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Adults to gain new skills on 400 free courses

Published 9 December 2020

Tens of thousands of adults to benefit from hundreds of free courses next year, including engineering, health, construction and accountancy.

Tens of thousands of adults will be able to benefit from almost 400 free courses next year, in the first major development in the Lifetime Skills Guarantee announced by the Prime Minister in September.

The fully-funded courses, ranging from engineering to healthcare to conservation, will be available to adults without a full qualification at Level 3 (A-level equivalent) from April 2021 to help them gain in-demand skills and open up further job opportunities.

Designed to help our country build back better after the pandemic, the qualifications in this offer have been carefully chosen to help adults improve their career prospects and meet the needs of the economy. They will be reviewed regularly so the courses offered can be updated as the economy changes.

The announcement marks an important step in the development of the government’s landmark Lifetime Skills Guarantee, which will transform the skills system to ensure more people, no matter their age or background, can get the skills they need to progress in employment.

The offer is backed by £95 million from the £2.5 billion National Skills Fund, which is financing programmes that both support the immediate economic recovery and help meet future skills needs.

This funding will not only enable thousands of adults to gain new qualifications and access better job opportunities; a proportion will also be used to support education and training providers to scale up their provision to deliver the courses and meet the needs of learners.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

Despite all our efforts, coronavirus is damaging the economy and putting people out of work. But I am determined to help everyone who has lost their job to retrain, develop new skills and find new opportunities.

The Lifetime Skills Guarantee will give thousands of adults across the country the chance to do exactly that – as we build back better after the pandemic.

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