"

Funding structures for ESOL were yesterday cited as suffering from constraints that would act as a barrier to promoting social cohesion.

Further, rules governing the allocation of free ESOL courses were deemed inflexible.

Speaking in the House of Commons yesterday morning, Minister of State for Further Education and Lifelong Learning, Bill Rammell, was forced to defend the Government's controversial policies on English for Speakers of Other Languages courses.

Michael Gove, Conservative MP for Surrey Heath, asked: "This country benefits hugely from an influx of new citizens who contribute immensely to the national health service, other public services and economic growth, but one of the barriers to effective social cohesion is the mastery of the English language".

"How can we promote social cohesion and build a successful multicultural Britain when there are constraints on the spending that would enable people to speak our shared, common language?"

Responding, Mr Rammell said: "I agree that it is important for us to give people opportunities to learn, study and understand English, for the purpose of community cohesion and for many other reasons. That is why we have tripled the budget and the numbers since 2001. However, the present situation is unsustainable, as the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education has pointed out".

"We need to make a change".

Andrew Love, [Lab/Co-Op, Edmonton], requested some flexibility in policy, arguing that asylum seekers have to wait much longer than the minimum period when getting their status resolved, while immigrants earning minimum wage would find it difficult to pay for courses.

Mr Love asked: "Will my hon. Friend allow some flexibility in the policy in recognition of those constraints?"

Mr Rammell pointed to the statistic that 80% of claims for asylum were being dealt with within eight weeks: "So it cannot be seen as a public funding priority to continue to fund learning for those who will not have the opportunity to remain in the United Kingdom".

He added: "I am trying to determine whether there is another indicator of low income besides the working tax credit that we could use to determine low income, in order to enable people to access free provision".

Ann Cryer, Labour MP for Keighley, pointed to an apparent anomaly in the Government's policy: "Is my hon. Friend aware that our ethnic communities already have to achieve a certain level of English to acquire citizenship, and that from April they will have to achieve a certain level of English to secure indefinite leave to remain?"

"I agree that we cannot go on and on increasing the number of places, but we do not want people to be sent away because they do not speak English when there is nowhere for them to learn it".

Mr Rammell replied: "The impact of the current unsustainable position is that in parts of the country people are having to wait for as long as two years to obtain a place on an ESOL programme, and the most vulnerable individuals are losing out most. The changes we are making are intended to ensure that such people gain access to provision".

Vijay Pattni.

What do you think about ESOL provision?

Email the Editor: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Related FE News articles:

UCU To Lobby Govt Over ESOL

"

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Advertisers

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Video Advert

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page