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Challenges: Response to the crisis

The adult education sector in Norway has been significantly affected by the pandemic, but NAAL was only slightly affected. The crisis resulted in less people attending the courses and a massive change to provide learning online. Although the ICT literacy in Norway is high, some providers still struggle with the provision of online methods. Sudden fall in income has not been fully compensated by arranging digital courses.

Responding to the crisis, the Norwegian government initiated a compensation program, but compensation programs have not been directed at the non-formal adult education sector. However there has been frequent dialogue with the government in order to set up alternative training courses in adult education, especially related to vocational training, targeted to people that lost their job. Alongside the many challenges that surfaced during covid, it also showed cooperation across the providers and revealed coalition building and dialogue, helping those in need.

Goals for 2021

One of the challenges for the next year will be to stimulate universities to offer continuing and further education for people who are already in work. NAAL also works to improve the relevance of higher education and to stimulate young people into vocational training, and to combine different forms of education. NAAL will also try to enhance financing of the non-formal adult learning sector.

NAAL would recommend the government to focus more on the voluntary and non-profit learning sector. EAEA’s member believes that education and training in the voluntary sector is central to human mastery, to the preservation of cultural and natural heritage, and well as an entrance to the labor market.