Headlines: September 3rd, 2001

An advertising campaign has been launched to encourage adults with basic skills needs to improve their education levels. This is part of a 1.5 billion three year crusade to improve literacy and numeracy. The aim is to improve the skills of some 750,000 adults.Up to 7 million adults struggle with reading, writing and doing everyday maths. One in five of the adult population do not have the skills expected of an average 11 year old. This often means that they cannot get a decent job, they also have reduced earnings and an increased chance of ill health and hardship.

The ‘Get On’ campaign on TV, radio and in the press, will include adverts featuring a range of situations where people’s personal literacy or numeracy ‘gremlins’ cause embarrassment or prevent them from doing what they want. Conclusions to the adverts show people overcoming their ‘gremlins’ and improving their lives as a result.

The adverts promote a free phone number – 08000 150 650 and callers can receive a free information pack, or speak to a learn direct advisor to enable them to get information on courses in their area. The free information pack contains a video, postcards with practical hints and tips to help in everyday situations, and a supporting leaflet. The video features learners who explain the benefits of taking basic skills courses.

Trainees will be able to take a range of basic skills tests, for which they will receive a certificate. In a pilot national testing scheme 65% achieved a pass grade