Adult Education Budget

West Midlands Combined Authority

As a provider to the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), Skills Training transforming lives by helping people in the region to get qualifications, a job and progress their careers.

As part of its regional skills strategy the WMCA has used devolved Adult Education Budget (AEB) commissioning powers to fund these skills programmes for people aged 19 or over to improve the earnings potential of low-paid, low-skilled workers and enable more residents to learn the literacy and numeracy skills they need for successful work and lives.

More than 2,000 people have joined the programmes, through two strands of delivery:

Lot 1: targeting unemployed people in priority areas to increase qualifications and employability (and ultimately progress into employment)

Lot 2: targeting low-skilled and low-paid adults who are employed, or at risk of redundancy

Delivering for local priorities

Our strategy supports the delivery of the West Midlands Combined Authority’s regional skills plan and boosting local skills development in their priority areas of:

  • Digital skills
  • Business Skills
  • Engineering and Manufacturing
  • Health and social care

In addition to a strong portfolio of Level 1 and Level 2 courses, we are increasingly adding new Level 3 courses, including:

  • Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health and Social Care
  • Management and Customer Service
  • Digital Marketing and Social Media
  • New Health and Social Care packages including Infection Prevention and Control and End of Life Care.

Sector-Based Work Academies

As part of our offer in the Lot 1 delivery we have created Sector-Based Work Academy Programmes (SWAPs) which are directly relevant to the jobs which employers in the West Midlands region are recruiting for.

The programmes are helping jobseekers who are claiming Universal Credit, Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) or Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) to build confidence, improve their job prospects and enhance their CVs.

We are seeing great success with our Careers Weeks where employers share industry insight and promote job opportunities and career pathways to our learners.

They include Microsoft, DPD, West Midlands Police, Midlands Metro, Nuffield Health, Boots Pharmacy, Amazon Award in Care, K2 Security, Black Country and West Birmingham NHS, Ikea and Arena Racing.

Prioritising low-skilled employees

Our Lot 2 provision has focused on helping to boost the skills and prospects of low-skilled learners employed in low-paid jobs and those at risk of redundancy, particularly numeracy and literacy development from Pre-Entry through to Level 2.

We work with growing numbers of high-profile employers to support the development and career progression of their employees, helping to fill skills gaps and generate a continuous pipeline of trained and committed people.

For example, by supporting the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital and University Hospital Birmingham with English and maths training 55 Healthcare Associates have progressed onto a Nursing Degree Apprenticeship.

Our NHS and other large employer relationships are growing year on year. Building on the success of our Level 1 and Level 2 vocational qualifications and English and maths courses, we are also introducing Level 3 courses including Management and Leadership, Engineering (QI), and Construction.

Contact us to find out more

    Please note: This form relates to employers and partnerships only - if you are a learner looking to obtain course information, please visit Courses for 16-18s, Traineeships for 16-24s, Courses for Adults 19+ or Apprenticeships for 16+.

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    It was a joy to see these young people’s successes. They feel valued and connected, and what Skills Training UK and its partners are achieving is amazing.

    Councillor Gloria Opara, Medway Council’s Deputy Mayor

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