The Open University has welcomed the publication today of the Times Education Commission’s final report.
Commenting on the report, Professor Tim Blackman, Vice-Chancellor of The Open University, said:
“This is a vital piece of work that highlights the challenges faced across the education system and the importance of bringing forward solutions to tackle these systemic issues.
“We welcome the report and the Government’s commitment to flexible lifelong learning. As an institution that has supported over two million people access higher education, we know the lifechanging impact that education has and the economic and social benefits that it brings.
“The Commission is right to identify the need to both strengthen further education and address higher education ‘cold spots’. We are proud to be playing our part in addressing this critical levelling-up issue in partnership with the Office for Students by supporting further education colleges expand their higher education offer.”
The OU hosted a visit from the Commission’s Chair, Rachel Sylvester, with student Susan Percy, who left school at 15 and then returned to study at the OU at the age of 59, featuring in the Commission’s report saying:
“They had to teach me times tables to start with, which was quite embarrassing, but I did it and I got a distinction.”
“I thought it’s years since I’ve felt like this, and it gave me a buzz. Now I’m on to the last year of my sociology degree. You can start again. I think it’s about confidence because up until coming here my confidence was on the floor. It brought me out of my shell. I feel like I belong somewhere, and I haven’t felt that for many years. It’s like I’ve gone back to being 18.”