Lack of rural learning opportunities
Only half of learners in England’s rural areas have "reasonable" (i.e. public transport links or reasonable travel time) access to an FE college and are losing out on access to education and skills opportunities, according to new research by Rural England Community Interest Company.
The State of Rural Services 2016 report found that rural populations have lower levels of qualification, and that access problems prevented many from improving their skills or accessing an apprenticeship. In addition to this, poor broadband services restrict the availability of online learning opportunities. Margaret Clark chair of Rural England’s Stakeholder Group, said: “When it comes to access to further education and skills development, rural areas are suffering due to difficulties and poor transport services.”