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Keeping the Options Open: The Importance of Maintaining a Broad and Flexible Curriculum Offer for Adults

Binding: 7
Pages: 72
Pub Date: 01/06/2005
ISBN: 9781862012431
Availability: In Stock
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There is growing concern among education providers, organisers and tutors in England about the narrowing or closure of programmes for adults in some locations, institutions and curriculum areas in response to policy priorities and targets. As a consequence of actual or expected pressure from their local LSC, some further education colleges have dropped their ?other provision?, while some LEAs have narrowed the range of programmes they offer adults. This discussion paper considers these developments and their implications. Looking at specific government priorities, such as the Level 2 entitlement and Skills for Life provision, the paper scrutinises the implications on both the curriculum, being distorted and narrowed by pressures to meet particular targets, and the growing neglect of people with the lowest skills levels, as providers feel constrained to recruit learners most likely to reach the required level of qualification. The paper examines the potential additional impact of forthcoming changes in the planning and funding of adult provision, arguing that current developments could be detrimental not only to the overall spread and diversity of learning opportunities but also to the goal of widening participation. Probing the assumptions about ?usefulness? that underlie current priorities, McGivney suggests that the most effective way of achieving national priorities and targets would be to provide a broad and flexible curriculum that responds not to external requirements but to adult learners? own diverse interests and needs

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