8. Delivering Better Outcomes for Adult Learners
8.1.1 Engagement in the development of the strategy showed that adult learners wanted to improve their work life/ employability through their current learning and progress in their learning by taking a further qualification.
8.1.2 These goals were not unique to island communities with engagement showing that adult learners across Scotland want to progress in their learning by gaining accreditation and to improve their work life and employability.
8.1.3 A high-level action in the strategic action plan is to "connect community-based adult learning with careers and employability services to create positive pathways for learners who face significant barriers to accessing work." Initial detailed actions have been created including increasing capacity by delivering training to adult learning practitioners on careers resources and; "work to increase CLD membership on Local Employability Partnerships to align and integrate with local priorities and explore how to embed the No One Left Behind approach and emerging employability policies and practices within adult learning provision." The strategy is, therefore, likely to have a positive impact on island communities by connecting island community-based adult learners' learning to local employment priorities.
8.1.4 A high-level action in the strategic action plan is to "increase access to and support for accredited learning underpinned by the SCQF, where appropriate, for community-based adult learning to support positive pathways for adult learners". Detailed actions are to "identify gaps in and availability of provision and respond by supporting the development of new opportunities" and "support and strengthen partnership working between colleges and community-based adult learning providers to deliver accredited learning in the community." The strategy is, therefore, likely to have a positive impact on island communities by providing new opportunities to gain qualifications.
8.1.5 The strategy has a particular focus on increasing the availability of community-based learning opportunities. Following feedback on the consultation draft, an ambition of creating new and increased positive pathways in collaboration with community based adult learners was set.
8.1.6 Policy interventions defining what these positive pathways are will be detailed during the initial year of the strategy's lifespan. Positive pathways could include confidence building, improving mental wellbeing and developing relationships and networks. A lack of current baseline data relating specifically to community-based adult learning in Scotland currently makes the definition of what positive pathways are, and what their impacts are on adult learners, difficult. As this is developed, consultation with island communities will take place to ensure that the pathways identified and developed meet the needs and aspirations of adult learners in island communities.
8.1.7 Positive pathways for adult learners includes language learning. Increased references to support Gaelic learning were suggested in feedback to the consultation draft of the strategy.
8.1.8 A number of detailed actions have been included in the strategic action plan following consultation that support and promote Gaelic. These are; "support the development and promotion of SpeakGaelic resources, support the development of progression routes for Gaelic learning and promote Gaelic learning opportunities to increase the use and visibility of Gaelic."
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