Record response: Thousands of students await outcome of Merton adult education consultation

The agony of waiting continues for Merton campaigners – after months of tireless efforts to keep Merton’s Adult Education alive, they are now restlessly expecting to hear its future.

Thousands of learners fear their beloved service will be downgraded and its Whateley Avenue home sold after Merton council make their decision on February 16.

As reported by SW Londoner, MAE came under review last year as the Labour-led council announced £32million in cuts.

A consultation inviting students to contribute their ideas for shaping MAE’s future ended on January 18 but students are concerned services will eventually be outsourced to independent providers.

The team behind the campaign to save MAE tweeted:

Additional worries were sparked when a report giving Wandsworth’s commissioned adult education an ‘Inadequate’ rating was published last week.

Merton students are now concerned their highly-appraised service could follow down the same route as the council is keen to move to a commissioning model.

Two petitions, set up by the save MAE campaign and Wimbledon Liberal Democrats parliamentary spokesperson Shas Sheehan, have attracted thousands of signatures.

More than 5,000 students are currently enrolled in MAE courses and the service has proved life-chaining for many of those attending classes and learning new skills.

Image courtesy of Googlemaps, with thanks

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