Leading online distance learning provider The Skills Network has entered into a European Social Fund (ESF) partnership with PeoplePlus, one of the UK’s leading public service providers of employment support. 

The Skills Network will assist in PeoplePlus’s ESF programme delivery to over 10 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPS) across the UK via providing a range of online training content.

PeoplePlus, who have an ESF programme worth £30 million, have selected The Skills Network to aid them in enabling people and businesses across numerous regions to improve their work-based skills and levels of employment by accessing a wide range of TSN’s online training courses.

This partnership will particulary help engage those hardest to reach with vocational training, by supporting individuals who find it difficult to obtain work – i.e. those who are unemployed, out of education or economically inactive – to access online learning resources that encourage work-based skills development.

PeoplePlus’s provision will be enhanced with a range online CPD certified short courses that will be auto-marked, auto-certified, and accessible for individuals to study anytime, anywhere.

This includes online content in:

  • Business skills
  • Retail and hospitality skills
  • Financial skills
  • Personal development and hospitality
  • Early years and childcare
  • Health and safety
  • Health and social care
  • Mental health awareness.

The partnership aims to support disadvantaged learners who experience barriers to further education, i.e. travel costs, childcare responsibilities and costs, lack of previous qualifications, and those who struggle with classroom-based training.

This initiative will help break down such barriers, by aiding PeoplePlus and over 10 LEPs, to deliver a flexible online content provision which covers:

  • Content accessed remotely as and when needed via microlearning, suiting individual needs
  • Interactive material, including video tutorials, case studies/workplace scenarios, quizzes and summary sections that promote learner engagement
  • Online training available for different levels – something to benefit people of all skill levels.

The partnership ultimately enables PeoplePlus and their LEP partners to innovate provision to local communities and enable people to enter into further education and training when they otherwise could not!

Steve Lidgard, Director for Skills at PeoplePlus, says: “We are really pleased to be working with The Skills Network at this exciting time of opportunity and growth for PeoplePlus.”

Karina Hepworth, Business Development Manager at The Skills Network, says: “We’re extremely proud to be working with PeoplePlus and assisting LEPs as an end-to-end ESF delivery partner.

We take pride in not only supplying LEPs and training providers with the online content they need to be responsive to local skill shortages, but also in providing organisations such as PeoplePlus with their own online learning environment that evidences their training and helps draw funding from the ESF.

This will help them assign courses to learners in bulk, record their training activity and report all learner progress in real time.”

James Earl, Executive Director at The Skills Network, says: “A meaningful partnership secured with a leading national provider in PeoplePlus – another instance where the benefits of online learning will see a significant positive impact on people’s lives via building valuable skills and greatly improving people’s employment opportunities.”

About The Skills Network and ESF DELIVERY

The Skills Network is a private training provider which specialises in online distance learning.

It supports employers, training providers, further education colleges and individuals to access distance learning courses in areas such as mental health, health and social care, childcare and education, accounting and finance, leadership and management.

With their own award-winning online learning system ‘EQUAL’, The Skills Network supports thousands of organisations every year to improve their learning delivery.

Learn how we can augment your ESF delivery via flexible online courses, reporting your training activity and making your organisation more responsive to your local priorities – Click here to register your interest for a free consultation.

You may also be interested in these articles:

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Newsroom Activity

Is a 'love of learning' far from common among tutors/students,
and (Love being blind, madness, a...

AELP Webinar Team added a new event 2 days ago

Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers – Refresh 2021

Overview It has been nearly two years since the ESFA refreshed the current Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers, therefore it is time for...

  • Thursday, 14 October 2021 10:00 AM
  • Online

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 Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 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, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

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.


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.


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