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Wales

  • There are over 2,500 employers in the lifelong learning sector in Wales including:

- 23 further education colleges and 2 further education institutions

- 12 higher education institutions, plus the Open University

- approximately 2,400 community learning and development providers including youth services

- approximately 34 libraries services and 20 archives services

- approximately 90 publicly funded work-based learning providers

  • 80% of employers have less than 10 employees, which is in line with the lifelong learning sector throughout the rest of the UK.
  • The Gross Value Added for the education sector in Wales (includes primary and secondary education) is over £3 billion, 7.5% of the total GVA for Wales.

Workforce statistics:

  • Approximately 89,000 people work in the lifelong learning sector in Wales. This is around 8% of the UK lifelong learning workforce.
  • 56% of the workforce is aged between 45 and 64, compared with 38% across all sectors in Wales.
  • 56% of the workforce in Wales is women, compared with 47% across all sectors in Wales.
  • 63% of the workforce in Wales is employed full-time, compared with 74% across all sectors in Wales.
  • Almost half of the workforce is employed in professional occupations such as lecturers and trainers. Almost a fifth is employed in associate professional occupations, such as learning support staff and instructors.

Qualification profile of the workforce:

  • 65% of the workforce is qualified to the equivalent of NVQ level 4 or above, compared with 31% across all sectors in Wales.
  • In further education, 39% of all college staff are qualified to first or further degree level, including professional qualifications. Data is not currently available for teaching staff only.
  • In higher education, 54% of all staff are qualified to first or further degree level, including professional qualifications. 86% of academic professionals are qualified to this level.
  • In libraries, 79% of library staff are qualified to the equivalent of NVQ level 4 or above.
  • 34% of youth services staff are qualified to first or further degree level.

Employment trends and future projections

  • Despite forecasts of falling workforce numbers in some occupational groups, it is estimated that approximately 30,000 people will need to be recruited into the sector over the next ten years to fill vacancies largely created by existing staff going into retirement.

Source: The lifelong learning workforce in Wales Factsheet 2009