ESB welcomes the findings in Lifelong Education Commission’s new report: ESOL Skills for Life

A new report by the Lifelong Education Commission says that enhancing English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) in the UK could be key to tackling national skills gaps and shortages.

ESB fully supports the report’s recommendations to ensure English language provision is accessible to all and endorses its call for an ‘ESOL Strategy for England’.

With the report’s findings also being welcomed by one of ESB’s loyal and trusted centres, London’s New City College, the report states that many migrants and asylum seekers are held back by their lack of English Language proficiency, especially in speaking and writing abilities that are essential for high-skilled jobs. 

Passionate about closing the disadvantage gap, the key points of this new report mirrors ESB’s own findings through its commitment to empowering all learners to thrive in education, training and employment, whatever their background.

Says ESB’s Chief Executive, Tina Renshaw, “We welcome this report and are excited about what this could hold for our ESOL learners. ESB promotes and assesses English language within a wide range of educational centres. Last year alone, ESB assessed over 17,000 ESOL learners, demonstrating the sheer scale of those seeking English language skills for life in the UK.”

For nearly 70 years, ESB has been empowering learners to succeed – especially those who face disadvantage – through its accessible portfolio of speech and language qualifications.

ESB’s Chief Assessor, Ben Jackson, adds: “One of the benefits of preparing learners for ESB’s qualifications, and then having them assessed by rigorously trained and standardised external assessors, is that teachers and tutors are able to focus on developing their learners’ English language skills against a set of clear criteria, whilst raising the value and understanding of these skills in the classroom and beyond. Our ESOL assessments support the development of vital English language skills, helping to boost engagement in daily life, leading to further learning and education, and gaining meaningful and sustainable employment. They offer a clear path to English language success.”

The video below demonstrates the immense impact that ESB’s ESOL assessments have on ESOL learners at another of our valued centres – Stanmore College. A number of their ESOL Learners consequently took the next step in their English language journey and completed ESB’s Ofqual Regulated ESOL International assessments.

You can also read about what some of ESB’s ESOL tutors say about our ESOL Skills for Life assessments:

“ESB Speaking and Listening assessments give a good balance between things that students can prepare and work towards, and the unknown. It really is a complete test of their whole range of language. Every assessment that I have seen is spot on for the right level – and therefore, is right for our students.”
Kirsty Barlow, the Essential Skills Curriculum Manager at Blackfriars Settlement

“I love ESB! The communication is always there and the process is easy. Everything is done externally so the pressure is off teachers and we can just prepare learners for their assessments, so it is great. We have been with ESB for about 7 years now and it has always been consistent and of high quality!”
ESB Organiser and Tutor at Stanmore College, Mafa Ardestani

ESB provides ESOL Skills for Life qualifications from Entry 1 to Level 2 and ESB ESOL International qualifications from B1 to C2 – enabling every individual to realise their potential, whatever their circumstances. Learners can also receive up to 36 UCAS points at Level 3 (C2), a great steppingstone into further learning or employment.

Please contact a member of ESB’s Business Development Team at if you wish to enrol your students to complete our ESOL assessments. You can also find out whether your organisation is eligible for financial support through ESB’s Christabel Burniston Fund.

You can read the full report here.


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