Boris Johnson to Unveil Funding Boost for U.K. Adult Job Training


Boris Johnson will unveil plans to boost training for adults Tuesday as his government seeks to tackle rising unemployment and provide the skilled workers businesses say they need.

The U.K. prime minister will announce a package of measures to provide support for ongoing vocational education so employees and people who are out of work can retrain and gain new skills.

More than 700,000 people have already lost their jobs as a result of coronavirus restrictions and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said last week he expects the “tragedy” of unemployment to affect many more as the U.K. economy is crimped by the pandemic and government support is withdrawn.

“As the Chancellor has said, we cannot, alas, save every job. What we can do is give people the skills to find and create new and better jobs,” Johnson will say in a speech on Tuesday, according to extracts released by his office. “We’re transforming the foundations of the skills system so that everyone has the chance to train and retrain.”

Measures to be announced by Johnson include:

  • Free college courses for people without post-16 school qualifications
  • More flexible higher education loans, allowing training to be split over a number of years and institutions
  • Additional funding for further education colleges
  • More cash to encourage small companies to employ apprentices
  • Investment in “boot camps” for digital skills, engineering and construction

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