The Basic Skills For Life Challenge


We were given a copy of The Basic Skills For Life Challenge, but unfortunately, any links to the document seem to have moved. I found this data particularly interesting as it is the area in which I grew up.

Shockingly, it shows Literacy levels for Ashton-In-Makerfield/Golborne as 12% of the population are at E3 or below/59% of population below Level 2 and numeracy levels even below that, with 50% at E3 or below, and 83% below Level 2. What’s more interesting is when we turn that statistic around, and realise that only 17% of the population have the skills deemed necessary for participation in life.

To be honest, and I hope this doesn’t sound patronising, but I feel very lucky to be in the situation that I’m in, but I’m also horrified with these statistics. They are a little outdated now, but one of the most shocking is one of Norley Hall, where 97% of the population have number skills lower than level 2. There are not a lot of job opportunities in the immediate area, however the town centre is not far away. This area is a densely populated residential area, meaning that there is an entire estate of people affected. It may be no surprise that this links with other theories of multiple deprivation.

If anyone has a copy of the original document so I can acknowledge the source correctly, let me know.


DFES (2003) Skills For Life Survey 

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