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The learning and skills concord

The learning and skills sector will invite government to sign up to a concord which describes our vision of how we will create public value for individuals, communities and the economy, and the policies thatwill support that vision. We have a vision of a learning and skills sector which:

* Strives to ensure that all students succeed through organisations that are well-led and in which an excellent service is given by professional, qualified, and valued staff

* Works with communities to help students to learn and acquire qualifications which reduce disadvantage and strengthen those communities

* Works closely with employers and employees to provide the nation's workforce with the knowledge and skills required by a world-class, prosperous economy

* Delivers a broad programme of education to young people, shaped to their individual aspirations and abilities

* Provides a full range of education opportunities for adult learners to flourish and to reach their personal goals

* Works to promote learning with those people who are underrepresented in lifelong learning - the elderly, the disabled, some ethnic minorities, women from disadvantaged social backgrounds

* Works with government to develop a universal learning entitlement, initially to a level two qualification, and by 2010 to a level three one The learning and skills sector will work with government to develop the policies necessary to realise our vision. These will:

* Ensure staff and management are given the resources, autonomy and authority, to be exercised in accord with public policy

* Develop a learner-friendly, rational and coherent lifelong learning curriculum framework with a credible and transparent credit system, and underpinned by fair, individual-focused guidance

* Create excellent national vocational qualifications, with the flexibility to respond to local employment and economic conditions

* Ensure sufficient resources to sustain a sector workforce which is professional, well qualified, up to date and well paid

* Minimise excessive bureaucracy, the multiplicity of targets, micro-management, and the clutter of short term initiatives

* Establish inspection and other monitoring arrangements which achieve an agreed, appropriate balance between accountability and scrutiny

* Represent success in this and other sectors through indicators which measure learners' progress

* Fund a staged programme to establish a universal entitlement to a level three qualification

This concord is a draft document. All individuals and institutions in the sector are invited to contribute their ideas and views to the final document. These might include:

* Suggesting additional content

* Contesting the content

* Ideas for better wording

* Views on a different structure

When we have a final document we will be inviting all institutions in the learning and skills sector to sign up to the concord initiative. All supporters' names will appear in the final document.


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