Devolution of adult education budget effective from 1 August 2019

A map of the mayoral combined authorities and the Greater London Authority

AEB is now devolved to the mayoral combined authorities and the Greater London Authority (GLA).

From 1 August 2019, the adult education budget (AEB) will devolve, to give 6 mayoral combined authorities (MCA’s) and the Greater London Authority (GLA) the opportunity to align adult education skills provision with local area needs. The move allows the MCA’s and GLA to make decisions about the allocation of the adult education budget, to support the needs of residents and local economic priorities.

The adult education budget supports eligible learners aged 19 and over and provides them with the skills and learning they need to equip them for work, an apprenticeship, or other learning.

The mayoral authorities receiving the devolved adult education budget are: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, Tees Valley, West Midlands, West of England and the Greater London Authority.

ESFA Chief Executive Eileen Milner said:

To prepare for the devolution of the adult education budget, ESFA and the Department for Education have been working collaboratively with the mayoral combined authorities and the Greater London Authority to support a smooth transition into operational readiness.

As part of this work, Memoranda of Understanding were agreed to provide clarity of roles and responsibilities, and to outline joint ways of working to support providers understanding of the changing landscape.

We have also ensured through our regular communications with providers and the sector, that they are aware of the changes and can plan accordingly.

ESFA continues to be responsible for:

  • the remaining adult education budget that is not devolved to combined authorities / GLA
  • continuing AEB funded learners in England, including residents in a devolved authority area who have not completed their learning by 31 July 2019 – for one year only
  • learners resident in England, including those resident in a devolved authority area, undertaking a 19-24 traineeship programme
  • providers who meet specified and published criteria to be funded nationally in 2019 to 2020 and 2020 to 2021

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