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Learning while caring

In this article the author discusses the learning and support needs of older women who, because they cared for elderly relatives, found it difficult to attend classes. She contends that there exists a gap in awareness and equal opportunities provision. In an in-depth investigation of the Government's new Access to Learning Fund (ALF) in relation to part-time students, the author found some considerable discrepancies. While carers in general receive less favourable treatment than disabled learners, the focus is firmly on those with childcare responsibilities, while grannycarers have a very low profile. Even more crucially, Faculty of Continuing Education (FCE) students at Birkbeck College are very unlikely to be following the minimum 60 credit course, which would render them eligible to apply for the ALF in the first place! These findings led the author to turn to the hidden grannycarers themselves, asking them exactly how they wished this glaring gap in their educational provision to be filled. This article presents the results of the author's research which aims to ascertain how Birkbeck, and also the Government, can support carers.

Additional Titles
Adults Learning
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Key Information

Type of Reference
National institute for adult continuing education
Resource Database
Social care online
Publication Year
Volume Number
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