New staff run social enterprise to move West Sussex adult learning forward

West Sussex Adult and Community Learning Service is setting up a new staff-run social enterprise from July.

The service will be a separate organisation from the county council.

The council said the decision will enable the service to apply for new and additional funding, look for new commercial opportunities and channel its energy into retaining what is “best about the service as well as enhancing it in the future”.

Peter Griffiths, cabinet member for education and schools, said: “The West Sussex Adult and Community Learning Service meets the needs of 14,000 students across the county. It is the only adult learning provider that delivers qualification courses, family learning, skills for life and community learning across the whole of West Sussex.

“I’d like to reassure residents and students that the high standard of service provided and wide range of courses on offer will continue.”

The Adult and Community Learning Service will become a company limited by guarantee and will be applying for charitable status to build and support its aims, which include affordability and opportunities for all.

Students and the community will be ask to get involved in planning adult learning to ensure the service for their area is more responsive, relevant and targeted. If this is something you would like to get involved with, please contact samuel.boulton@westsussex.gov.uk for further information.

The county council will initially provide continued support for the new social enterprise, but this will be reduced over a five-year period while the enterprise establishes itself.

The decision will come into force on May 1 after passing the call-in period.