The Association of Employment and Learning Providers (@AELPUK) has welcomed Government plans for the introduction of lifelong learning accounts by 2025 as a step towards greater empowerment for learners and employers.
Plans to introduce “lifelong learning accounts” from 2025 as part of the lifelong loan entitlement for provision at levels 4-6 were announced in a speech by Minister of State for HE & FE Michelle Donelan to the Times Higher Education Campus Live event on 24th November. Students will be able to access a learning loan entitlement worth the equivalent of four years of post-18 education that can be used across higher and further education as they see fit.
AELP believes individual skills accounts are the right mechanism to put learners and employers at the heart of the system, facilitating greater choice and ownership of lifelong learning, with the ability for different parties to contribute towards the investment in skills required. Such skills accounts should include funding so level 2 and 3 qualifications can also be accessed, to promote social mobility and tackle skills shortages. However, lifelong learning accounts are a step towards this goal.
Jane Hickie, Chief Executive of AELP, said:
“The Government announcement to introduce lifelong learning accounts from 2025 is a big win for learners and for employers. AELP have been consistent in calling for a bolder and more ambitious reform of adult education.
“Lifelong learning accounts offer the opportunity to move away from the current institutionally-led approach to a system which empowers learners and employers to make the choices that suit their needs. A demand-led system offers better value and ensures funding goes directly to the frontline- the learner. Although this is certainly a step in the right direction, we would also welcome the government extending this to level 2 and 3 learners.”