Basic skills are given a push

The Basic Skills Agency has begun developing a promotional campaign in conjunction with communications consultancy Redhouse Lane.

The campaign is part of a crusade, launched by education and employment minister Baroness Blackstone, to halve the number of people in the UK with literacy and numeracy problems.

A Redhouse Lane spokesman says: “One of the challenges of the campaign was to target different sectors, including young people, older people and parents, in the most appropriate way.”

The project is still at the planning stage. Redhouse Lane’s brief is to present ideas for a cross-media campaign.

Government ministers are due to discuss the consultancy’s proposals next month. “There are a vast number of people struggling to use basic skills in England. The figure has been put at seven million. Government departments, colleges, trade unions, community centres and businesses will be working together to try and end what’s being called a national scandal,” says the spokesman.

The Government has allocated £17m to the cause over the next 16 months. The initiative is likely to be launched early next year.

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