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Cash still there for basic skills push

Your article "Cash dries up for illiterate adults" (FE Focus, March 26) was wrong to say that the Government's basic skills drive is running out of cash.

As part of our continued efforts to undo the past decades of neglect in literacy and numeracy education we have funded more basic skills provision this year than ever before. The Learning and Skills Council, which funds most basic skills courses, is committed to fully funding adult basic skills provision, ensuring that these priority learners are not turned away on the grounds of affordability.

There has been an unprecedented increase in the number of learners enrolling on literacy and numeracy courses since the launch of our skills for life strategy.Figures have gone up from around 250,000 in 200001 to over 322,000 last year.

The Government also wants all adults who improve their literacy and numeracy to go on to level 2 and higher-level qualifications.

The skills strategy, together with the New Deal for Skills just announced by the Chancellor in the Budget, will ensure they can acquire the skills for employability they and our economy need.

Ivan Lewis MPParliamentary under-secretary of state for skills and vocational education, Department for Education and Skills

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