Adults from across the region who want to improve their numeracy skills are being urged to sign up to a new £3.6million mathematics programme.
The Government’s Multiply initiative is open to people aged 19 or older who do not hold a GCSE maths grade C or equivalent. The programme is being funded by the Department for Education and delivered by a range of organisations – including local colleges, training providers and Local Authorities in partnership with local Voluntary and Community Sector Organisations – on behalf of the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority.
There are a number of free courses for beginners and those who want to build on the foundations of their maths knowledge, to more advanced courses such as GCSE Maths or Level 2 Functional Skills qualification.
These can be accessed in person and online, including part-time and during the evening, so they suit every lifestyle.
The courses can help people secure a qualification to boost their career opportunities, leading to higher wages, or simply give them a helping hand in day-to-day life in everything from shopping to cooking.
One success story is Emma, 23, from Stockton. She engaged with Multiply to secure a Level 2 Maths Functional Skills qualification, but the experience was so positive she also got a confidence boost from the classroom learning. This has given her the drive to secure a place on an Access to Social Care course and she is now pursuing a career in the sector.
Susan from Guisborough has showed you’re never too old to start learning again. The 67-year-old stepped back into school for the first time since 1969 to brush up on her maths skills to help her grandchildren with their homework.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “No matter the reason you want improve your maths skills, these free and flexible Multiply courses can help give you a leg-up.
“People who have good maths skills will also have an advantage in securing one of the thousands of good-quality, well-paid jobs we’re helping to create across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool, putting more money in their pockets.
“It’s not only a gateway to a better job – upskilling our workforce will lead to more opportunities and investment as businesses look to base themselves here because they’re confident local people have the expertise they are crying out for.
“I’d urge anyone to sign up, take advantage and get learning.”
Cllr Bob Cook, Combined Authority Cabinet Lead for Education, Employment and Skills, and Leader of Stockton Borough Council, said: “It’s never too late to pick up the skills and experience that you may have missed out on at school, and this Multiply programme really has something for everyone.
“Three in ten UK adults don’t think that numbers are for them and, if that could describe you, help is at hand. Whether you want to progress in your chosen career or just want to feel confident in checking your change at the shops, see what these courses have to offer.”
For more information, visit www.teesvalley-ca.gov.uk/multiply