The Government’s Multiply programme is focused on raising participation in learning and attainment in Maths for adults aged 19 and over.
In line with all other top tier local authorities Thurrock submitted an investment plan for the delivery of the allocation of £1,144,939 over 3 years from April 2022 – March 2025.
Increasing maths skills across the borough is a key priority for our elected members. The Backing Thurrock Action Plan (priority 1.5) identifies the need to help local people, particularly those from vulnerable groups or who have lost jobs through the pandemic, to re skill and upskill and find work.
Thurrock Council’s Skills Plan includes a specific objective around upskilling the essential skills of the Borough to meet its priorities and Multiply will deliver the maths element of this objective. The project will also contribute to the wider ambitions of the plan including provider collaboration to develop skills pathways that meet the skills needs of the significant economic growth and regeneration of the area.
The objectives of Multiply align with the local and national levelling up agenda where we will create opportunities for all starting with those residents with the lowest skills base. Thurrock has a disproportionately high number of residents without level 2 qualifications (32% against national average of 25% and regional average of 23%), including maths. 7.1% (7900 people) of residents have no qualifications at all.
Data collected from provider partners delivering maths provision in Thurrock identifies that participation has fallen during the pandemic, more markedly in the lower (pre-entry to entry 3) levels. Multiply will target people that do not identify with needing maths upskilling through contextualised interventions around things they need to do in their everyday life such as supporting their children with their homework, managing their money, gaining the skills required to gain or progress within employment and developing fluency and a comfortableness with working with number.
The South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) has identified significant mismatch between local skills and jobs available. Many workers are in occupations that are at risk due to AI and will need to reskill. Higher technical jobs require a higher level of maths.
The government has confirmed funding for year 2 of £399,393.
Provider grants of £3 - 10K will be awarded for this year’s Multiply allocation and more funding will be available in the subsequent final year.
We are now launching our community grant. Applications from community organisations in Thurrock to support the following Multiply intervention are welcome.
Numeracy activities, interventions or provision developed in partnership with community organisations and other partners aimed at engaging the hardest to reach learners.
We know that there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to learning, that not all people will recognise that they necessarily have low numeracy, and that many future learners may not be close to stepping into a classroom. The activities funded by the community grant scheme will include innovative ideas for engaging with people in our priority wards and priority cohorts and helping them to improve their numeracy skills.
Examples of the types of activity that could be funded by the project are listed below however we are looking for new ideas and ways to engage with communities, so we are not being prescriptive about the types of activity.
- Activities designed to increase confidence with numbers for those needing the first steps towards formal numeracy qualifications.
- Activities designed to help people use numeracy to manage their money
- Activities to help people who are at risk (eg: debt, homelessness, gambling addiction …)
- Activities for parents wanting to increase their numeracy skills in order to help their children and help with their own progression.
- Numeracy courses aimed at prisoners, those recently released from prison or on temporary licence.
- Some examples:
- Cooking on a budget
- Healthy eating on a budget
- Making the most of shopping deals
- Craft activities that include measuring and working with number
- Managing money: budgeting, reducing energy bills, etc..
Year 2 activities need to be completed by 31 March 2024.
Grants will be based on a minimum agreed number of adults participating in your project.
Based on a unit cost of £34.20 per GLH (twice the GLH tariff of classroom provision under AEB) to enable innovation, delivery to smaller groups and where possible in community settings: £5k = 146 GLH – or 24 opportunities based on 6 GLH per course.
We are keen to reward quality, innovation and targeting for our priority cohorts and places.
We would welcome bids for all areas and cohorts of adults aged 19 and above. However, we would be particularly interested to see proposals that target people that are living with vulnerabilities.
Closing date for applications is midday Monday 31st July 2023
Grants will be awarded by the end of August.