More Maths Courses Added as Multiply Scheme Enters Second Year

Tees Valley Combined Authority | Published on: 12th September 2023

A raft of new courses to help boost adult maths literacy are now on offer as new figures show last year’s Multiply programme smashed its targets.

The Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority secured £3.6million from Government for its Multiply initiative.

It is open to people aged 19 or older who do not hold a GCSE maths grade C or equivalent, offering free courses for beginners and those who want to build on the foundations of maths knowledge – as well as more advanced courses such as GCSE Maths or Level 2 Functional Skills qualification.

The initiative, launched last year, originally aimed to encourage 1,750 people onto its courses, but currently the number of participants stands at 2,081.

The courses, which can be accessed in person and online include part-time, evening classes and flexible classes to suit any lifestyle.

This year, community “bitesize” activities are joining the offering, with maths being applied to everyday life including sewing, board games and DIY. There is also an expanded range of employer-focused activity, including bespoke sessions to directly address employer needs.

Hannah Wade, 38, from Darlington, is currently unemployed with a long-term health condition. Previously working at management level in childcare settings, she went on to complete a Functional Skills Level 1 Maths course.

Thanks to Multiply, she has now secured an unconditional offer of a place on Teesside University’s Access of Social Studies course beginning next September. In the interim, she has embarked on a Level 2 course in “Adverse effects of Childhood Experiences”.

She said: “I have a chronic health condition that requires me to be on strong medication. This condition affects my energy levels and cognition. In addition, I also have anxiety and depression which affects my day-to-day life.

“The most useful aspect of the course was reconnecting in a learning environment and gaining confidence in updating my past knowledge of maths whilst also learning new methods and ways to work out maths problems. Having an actual person to encourage and support my learning and personal needs was also predominantly a huge help.

“I am very excited that I can progress on with my career plans and I am proud that I have achieved something, which only a few years ago I never thought would be possible.”

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “It’s never too late to gain the skills you need to get on in your career and succeed in a good-quality job in the region. Whether you just want a leg up, or to start from scratch, Multiply has a course to suit you.

“Thousands of people have already praised the course and now, in its second year, we’ll only have more people taking advantage of these to boost their prospects or simply help them out day-to-day.

“From our devolved Adult Education Budget and in-school careers development initiatives to the Teesworks Skills Academy and more, we’re making sure no one gets left behind and everyone has the confidence to secure the well-paid jobs we’re helping to create across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool.”

Multiply is funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund 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..

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