Government Minister praises ‘incredibly innovative’ Lancashire Adult Learning and Nelson and Colne College

The government’s Minister for Apprenticeships and Skills has heard first-hand how  Lancashire Adult Learning and Nelson and Colne College are delivering outstanding education to support aspirations and transform lives across the county and beyond.

Anne Milton MP visited Lancashire Adult Learning’s Northlight base in Brierfield, where she took part in a round-table discussion on the education landscape in Lancashire with Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson, senior leaders, governors, members of staff, learners and key delivery partners, including the Department for Work and Pensions.

During this opportunity, Ms Milton MP heard about the pioneering projects that LAL is delivering across the county through targeted adult learning courses in areas including Family Learning, Health and Wellbeing, Employability, ICT and Digital Inclusion and Preparation for Life (English, Maths and ESOL).

She also heard about the benefits of the Talk English project from NCC student Alexandra Mitchell-Males, who has a conditional offer from the University of Oxford. Alexandra was one of 18 college students to receive training from LAL in 2016-17 to teach basic English on a voluntary basis at community venues in East Lancashire with the aim of improving integration within those communities.

Ms Milton MP then went on a tour of LAL’s state-of-the-art facilities, where she visited Maths and ESOL classes, a meeting of school leaders and teachers from the Pendle Challenge group, and met learners with learning disabilities developing independent living skills as they prepared a meal in the specialist flat. She was also introduced to Apprentices and employer partners including Bright Engineering, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, Liberata and Pendle Borough Council and Silentnight.

Associate Principal of Lancashire Adult Learning and Nelson and Colne College Tracey Baron said: “I would like to thank Anne Milton MP for visiting Northlight alongside Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson.

“It was a pleasure to be able to welcome her to Northlight to showcase our exceptional provision across the different areas of the college, and in particular make the case for just how critical adult community learning is in changing lives for the better.

“Thanks to all of our key partners and employers who attended too as this was a fantastic opportunity for everybody involved to raise the importance of education and training in improving people’s lives.

“We at the college are committed to raising and supporting aspirations, providing social mobility and an essential talent pool for the local, regional and national economy.”

Anne Milton MP said: “I was amazed at the incredibly innovative approach that LAL have taken to teaching and learning. All the staff have clearly committed to using every lever at their disposal to integrate learning across all educational sectors and with all age groups. I was particularly impressed with the work they are doing with adults, helping them to help their children learn at school, which clearly opens opportunities for the parents to consider upskilling themselves.

“The links they have built with all the local authorities and schools have clearly been critical in achieving their outstanding results. They have created a web that is woven into the statutory, voluntary and educational bodies to inspire people, whatever their age, whatever their background, to go on to learn more.”

Andrew Stephenson MP said: “Nelson and Colne College is one of the top performing colleges in the country for Apprenticeships, A level and vocational education. Now with the adult offer delivered through Lancashire Adult Learning, it caters for every ability and generation of learner across the whole community.

“We are fortunate to have them on the doorstep in Pendle and it was great that Anne accepted an invitation to see for herself the tremendous efforts that are being taken to improve lives and the amazing results that are being achieved.”

In 2016, Nelson and Colne College expanded to include Lancashire Adult Learning, which delivers to over 11,000 adult and community learners. NCC is currently the number one college in the country for learner achievement, at all ages and levels, according to recent government data, and is also the second in the country for 16-18 Apprenticeship success and fifth in the country for timely Apprenticeship completions, at all ages and levels.

For more information about LAL, contact 0333 003 1717 or visit www.lal.ac.uk. For more information on NCC, including its Apprenticeship offer, visit www.nelson.ac.uk

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