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New figures show large drop in number of adult learners and apprenticeship starts

26 November 2014 | last updated: 11 March 2019

The number of people starting an apprenticeship fell by 13.7% this year and the number of adult learners dropped by 10.7%, according to government figures released today.

UCU said the figures, comparing the 2013/14 and 2012/13 academic years, highlighted how loans introduced in April 2013 for adults were having an impact on demand and needed to be reviewed.

UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'These statistics show a shocking drop in the number of adult learners. The introduction of advanced learning loans in April 2013 has had a devastating impact on learner numbers.

'We should be doing everything we can to encourage people back into education and training. The time has come for a complete rethink of loans and the funding system in further education.'