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A Third of Adults have No Formal Qualifications

Friday 22nd July 2011

A recent survey carried out by the University and College Union has warned that Britain is divided into education “haves and have-nots”. In some areas of the UK, the study, based on Office for National Statistics figures, found that up to a third of 16-64 year olds had no formal qualifications at all and the differences in educational achievement varies widely throughout the country. It also found that in Northern constituencies, such as Glasgow North East, and Birmingham Hodge Hill more than a third of adults of working age had no qualifications, whereas in the south of the country only 1.9 per cent of adults in Brent North lacked any qualifications. The Union noted that many of the have and have-nots live side-by-side, for example people living in Newcastle upon Tyne North are twice as likely to have qualifications than people living in Newcastle upon Tyne Central. The study pointed out that people in locations with the lowest levels of qualifications were likely to suffer most from new government policies as it would restrict access to education. For example the rise in tuition fees and lack of education maintenance allowance will hit poorer families the hardest.

Sally Hunt, the union’s general secretary, said in the Telegraph this morning that: “There is a real danger that children growing up in certain areas will have their ambition blunted and never realise their full potential.”


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