Government funding worth £4.3million is due to improve maths skills across the county to help boost job prospects.
The planned three-year funding package is set to benefit Nottinghamshire adults and employers thanks to a government scheme known as Multiply, which aims to improve numeracy skills. Nottinghamshire County Council will now work up plans to best use these funds to set up free new maths courses later this Autumn, working with local partners.
Welcoming the investment, Nottinghamshire County Council leader, Cllr Ben Bradley MP, who is also one of the Government’s ambassadors for further education said, “This planned investment will help us look at even more ways to boost skills across the county.
“Being good with numbers is such an essential skill as it can really improve job chances and is often a requirement when applying for training or education courses.
“Improving maths skills will not only benefit the individual and their ambitions, having a skilled workforce is good news for employers and our economy too.
“Maths is of course part of everyday life, particularly in these times of rising costs and having to manage money more carefully than ever.
Andrew Cropley, principal at Vision West Notts College in Mansfield, has been a long-time advocate for this type of funding. He said, “It is great to see more resources pushed towards improving numeracy skills. Being able to work with numbers is such an empowering thing in our daily lives, including how to make the most of our time and money, so any scheme which enables us to help more people feel more confident in doing this has to be a good thing.
“With the cost of living crisis, every penny counts for many households across the county so managing our money is so much more effective if we have a basic understanding of numbers.
“By building up confidence in using numbers can help people secure better employment and earn better wages to drive long-term prosperity.”
East Midlands Chamber director of policy and external affairs Chris Hobson commented, “Research we’ve done to develop a new approach to skills delivery in the region has demonstrated that basic numeracy is one of the most important skills to businesses, which require people who can carry out everyday tasks such as understanding bills and budgeting.
“The Multiply scheme is therefore a welcome step in the right direction to equip adults with skills for life that will help them gain long-term employment and support firms in their drive to boost productivity, which is one of the biggest barriers to growth right now.”
A new skills survey has also been launched today by the county council to help shape plans to deliver the new courses. The aim is that adults who do not have a GCSE in maths at grade C (equivalent to grade 4) or above will be able to access free numeracy courses that fit around their lives and work. Employers will also benefit from boosting their workforce’s numeracy skills via these free and flexible courses.
Councillor Bradley added, “We want to make sure this investment can be targeted to those who will most benefit, so we’ve launched a short skills survey to help us plan these new courses for later this year.”
The survey will run until 19 June: Maths skills survey – Nottinghamshire County Council – Citizen Space
Further details of how to sign up to courses will be announced later this summer.