Section 1. AN AGENDA
This Report sets out the case for the development of a culture of lifelong learning for all. In this section we summarise a possible 10 point agenda we believe can be achieved within the lifetime of this Parliament. It is also intended to lay the foundations for further development, reaching into the next century. Our suggestions are grouped under ten main headings for action. The detailed arguments supporting our proposals are to be found in the remainder of our report.
Change and the Need for Lifelong Learning
1.1 This country needs to develop a new learning culture, a culture of lifelong learning for all. It is essential to help the country and all of its people meet the challenges they now face, as they move towards the twenty-first century. Those challenges are to be found in many different spheres of life. They feature in the economy and labour market, in the need to meet increased competition and in the requirement for new skills and capacities at work. They are evident in the demand for new products and services and in the radical and far-reaching transformations in technology, information and communications now in train. There are also wide-ranging changes to be addressed in families, communities, relationships and in people's aspirations and very identities.
1.2 A culture of lifelong learning can act as a resource in the midst of change, helping people both to cope with change and in their strivings to shape it to their own devices, as active citizens. As things stand, although a good many people in this country already achieve high levels of competence and qualifications, through school and post-compulsory education, there still exists a deep 'learning divide' in our society.
1.3 On one side of the divide stand those who have already attained qualifications and who carry on with an active involvement in learning throughout their lives, both in work and beyond. They still constitute a minority, although their numbers have been growing over recent years. On the other side stands the majority, including those who have little to show by way of formal qualification and achievement or who have not been involved in systematic learning since leaving compulsory education, and declare that they have no wish or plans to do so. Such a divide is incompatible with a culture of lifelong learning for all.
A Major Task
1.4 Establishing such a culture represents a major task for everyone in this country, especially for the Government and those people whose job it is to fund, promote or provide learning. They will all need to modify their approach and behaviour, if lifelong learning for all is to become a reality. The biggest change of all will be required in the attitudes of individuals and groups, particularly amongst those who are not currently engaged in lifelong learning activities, who demonstrate no inclination to become involved, or enjoy few opportunities to develop their abilities, interests or capacities through learning.
|10 Point Agenda|
|1.||A Strategic Framework|
|2.||A Revolution in Attitudes|
|3.||Widening Participation and Achievement|
|4.||Home, Community and Workplace|
|5.||Simplification and Integration|
|6.||Partnerships, Planning and Collaboration|
|7.||Information, Advice and Guidance|
|8.||New Data, Targets and Standards|
|9.||The New Technologies of Broadcasting and Communication|
|10.||Funding and Finance|
|Part Two||Contents Page|