The Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority Cabinet have today (June 28) agreed to award £25.8million of the devolved adult education budget to successful training providers.
The budget will be used by 33 providers to deliver post-19 education and skills across the region for the 2019/2020 academic year from August 1.
As part of the Government’s devolution agenda, areas with Metro Mayors have been granted control over post-19 education budgets, alongside powers covering delivery, and performance management.
This will be the first time Tees Valley will have control of the budget for Adult Education and it will be one of only 8 areas in the country with the powers.
In the ten-year Tees Valley Investment Plan agreed in January, an additional £55million of funding has been pledged by the Mayor and Combined Authority into wider education, employment and skills initiatives. These include schemes to support apprenticeships, tackle unemployment, and drive forward proper careers education.
Mayor Houchen said: “Thanks to the Government’s devolution policy, we are only getting control of this fund because our region agreed to a directly-elected Mayor. With this investment, we will ensure learners can gain the skills that local businesses desperately need.
“For decades, some companies took the easy way out and brought in cheap labour to fill demand. Now we have control over post-19 education, we will start investing in home-grown talent by re-training local people to fill our skills gap.
“For the first time ever, we will absolutely make sure that local people are properly trained to fill the jobs being created today and into the future.”
Cllr Bob Cook, Tees Valley Combined Authority’s Cabinet Lead for Education, Employment and Skills, said: “With these new providers on board, we can give the sort of adult education that plays to our strengths and that will work for our residents.
“With a wealth of opportunity available in the region for top-quality jobs, we need to make sure our workforce is equipped to tackle these head-on and succeed in rewarding careers.”