Adult Education Budget (AEB)

Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) 19+ Funding Offer

The Adult Education Budget (AEB), funds qualifications and programmes for learners aged 19+. 

Employers and learners can access AEB funding via their local training provider or FE College.

The AEB is a great resource for employers who need to improve the skills of their workforce to meet the future challenges of automation and skills shortages. It can support staff to gain new skills, improve their current level of knowledge in an occupation, or get them ready for an apprenticeship.

AEB can also support individual learners to gain new skills to support their career development or a career change, or to improve progression opportunities in their current job role.

Below are some examples of how the Adult Education Budget can help individuals to progress and employers transform their business. We have included a table at the bottom of this page that shows detailed information about learner eligibility for full or partial funding.

AEB can:

  • Fund anyone aged 19-23 to get a full level 2 or 3 qualification, if they don’t already have one. If you are aged 24+ you may need to contribute to some costs.
  • Fully fund low waged learners aged 24+ to get a first full level 2 or 3 qualification.
  • Fully fund anyone who is unemployed for any qualification or course up to level 2.
  • Fully fund any low waged individual, for whom English is not their first language, to improve their language skills and knowledge up to level 2.
  • Fully fund English and maths, up to and including level 2, for individuals aged 19 and over, who have not previously achieved a GCSE grade A* - C or grade 4, or higher.

Low wage learners – for 2018, the government has introduced a pilot to allow for a more flexible use of AEB to support employed learners who are on a low wage. The threshold is an annual wage of £15,736.50 or lower.

City & Guilds has over 1500 qualifications that are funded by the AEB. These can be found in the City & Guilds AEB Qualification Catalogue.

Traineeships

AEB funds traineeships for unemployed learners aged 19 to 24 years. AEB can also fund additional units, awards and certificates from City & Guilds, as part of the flexible element of a traineeship to support the trainee with occupationally specific knowledge and skills.

 

Useful links


Maths & English

AEB fully funds anyone aged 19+ to gain up to a Level 2 qualification in maths or English, if they do not already have one. The list of maths and English qualifications that are eligible to be funded are on our dedicated Maths and English website.
City & Guilds Maths and English information

ESOL information

AEB fully funds 19+ unemployed learners to access ESOL learning aims. If a learner is employed and starts an ESOL learning aim then the ESFA will co-fund the programme (learner must contribute to the costs), unless the learner earns below the low threshold.
ESOL

Learner Loans

Available for 19+ learners to access full Certificate and Diploma qualifications at L3 and above.
19+ FE Adult Learner Loans

Funding rules

ESFA funding rules, which fully explain what and who is and isn’t funded.
Adult Education Budget Funding and Performance Management Rules

ESFA information

ESFA technical document explaining the funding formula, rates and policy.
ESFA Funding Rates and Formula

Funding Eligibility Table

Provision

19- to 23-year-olds

24+ unemployed

24+ other

English and maths, up to and including level 2

(Must be delivered as part of the legal entitlement)

Fully funded*

Fully funded*

Fully funded*

Level 2 (excluding English and maths)

(First full level 2 must be delivered as part of the legal entitlement)

Fully funded* (first and full)

Fully Funded

Co-funded+

(unless low waged, then fully funded)

Learning to progress to level 2

Fully funded^ (up to and including level 1)

Fully funded

Co-funded+

(unless low waged then fully funded)

Level 3

(First full level 3 must be delivered as part of the legal entitlement)

Fully funded* (first and full)

Loan-funded

Loan-funded

Loan-funded** (previously achieved full level 3 or above)

Traineeship#

Fully funded

(including 16- to 24year-olds##)

N/A

N/A

English for Speakers of Other

Languages (ESOL) learning up to and including level 2

Co-funded+

Fully funded

Co-funded+

(unless low waged then fully funded)

Fully funded – unemployed

Learning aims up to and including level 2, where the learner has already achieved a first full level 2 or above

Co-funded+

Fully funded

Co-funded+

(unless low waged then fully funded)

Fully funded – unemployed

*Must be delivered as one of the English and maths, and/or first full level 2 or first full level 3 qualifications required as part of the legal entitlements.

^Must be delivered as entry or level one provision from local flexibility.

# Excludes flexible element where funding depends on age and level.

##16- to 18-year-old learners must be eligible under the ESFA's young people's residency requirements.

** Availability of loans at level 3 does not replace the legal entitlement to full funding for learners aged 19 to 23 undertaking their first full level 3.

+ Low Wage flexibility may apply, refer to paragraph 151 of ESFA funding rules


Contact us by email or on 0844 543 033 to learn more about the Adult Education Budget or about what City & Guilds qualifications can do for you or your business.