Your views count!

We are passionate about ensuring that we engage with you to improve the service we offer locally. Your input is vital in helping us move forward in the future.

As a valued learner, we would like to invite you to be part of one of our Learner Forum meetings below:

  • Wednesday 9th November, Crawley Adult Education Centre, Ifield Community College, 1.30pm – 2.30pm
  • Thursday 17th November, Southwick Community Centre, Bunyan Room, 1.00pm – 2.00pm
  • Monday 21st November, Bognor Regis Adult Education Centre, 5.00pm – 6.00pm 
  • Tuesday 22nd November, The Learning Shop, Littlehampton, 10.30am – 11.30am
  • Wednesday 23rd November, Marle Place Adult Education Centre, Burgess Hill, 2.00pm – 3.00pm

Tea, coffee and cake will be provided! Booking is essential. Please email or contact (01243) 850713 to confirm your place.

Aspire Sussex win £1 million bid to build better opportunities across the South East

Aspire Sussex Adult Education and partners have been successful in bids to the – Building Better Opportunities programme and have received funding totalling just over £1 million.

Building Better Opportunities is a programme jointly funded by the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund.

They will be leading two new projects across the Coast to Capital LEP area (East and West Sussex, Surrey, Brighton and Hove).

The two projects involve working with a range of partners who will bring expertise to provide targeted family-focused provision through family learning and community inclusion, supporting hard to reach groups and individuals to return to work.

Robyn Kohler, Chief Executive Officer for Aspire Sussex, said: “Both projects have the potential to significantly improve the lives of individuals, families and local communities. We are delighted to have this opportunity, and to have been successful in both bids. Our teams and partners have been working on the development stage of these projects since we received initial funding in November last year and we are looking forward to offering new courses and opportunities to volunteer from October.”

For further information on the project, please email Robyn Kohler at

Notes to Editors:

Building Better Opportunities

  • The Big Lottery Fund is the largest funder of community activity in the UK. It puts people in the lead to improve their lives and communities, often through small, local projects.
  • It is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by National Lottery players for good causes. Every year it invests over £650 million and awards around 12,000 grants across the UK for health, education, environment and charitable purposes.
  • Since June 2004 it has awarded over £8 billion to projects that change the lives of millions of people.
  • The project has received up to £ of funding from the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund as part of the 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme in England. The Department for Work and Pensions is the Managing Authority for the England European Social Fund programme. Established by the European Union, the European Social Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support skills development, employment and job creation, social inclusion and local community regenerations. For more information visit

Celebrating student success in beautiful Burgess Hill

Aspire Sussex Hair and Beauty students have been recognised for their achievements at an awards event in Burgess Hill.

The annual event organised by Aspire Sussex last month celebrated the achievements of the Hair and Beauty department at their Marle Place Adult Education Centre in Burgess Hill.

Aspire Sussex CEO Robyn Kohler said: “We are extremely proud of what our students achieve and the hard work and commitment they display throughout their course. This event is an excellent showcase of what can be achieved on one of our Hair and Beauty courses, as well as celebrating individual progress.”

“We keep the class sizes small on our Hair and Beauty courses to ensure everyone gets the best learning experience and we are very proud of the number of students who go on to get jobs with salons or set up their own business. The quality of teaching on these courses is highly regarded by local employers and our team are already looking forward to welcoming new students next term.”

The awards for beauty were:

  • Student of the Year –  Emma Leaney
  • Achiever of the Year – Kayley Smith

The awards for hair were:

  • Level 2 Student of Year – Angela Taylor
  • Level 3 Student of Year – Jessica Collins
  • Level 2 Achiever of the Year – Zana Kuklyte

Aspire Sussex still have some places left on Hair and Beauty courses starting in September. To find out more, please contact 01444 810710 or visit

Get the learning bug with a course at Aspire Sussex Adult Education this autumn!

If you would like to take up a new challenge this year, why not join the thousands of people who have already caught the learning bug with an Adult Education course?

The countywide Autumn/Winter brochure containing hundreds of learning opportunities across West Sussex is available now.

Robyn Kohler, Chief Executive Officer for Aspire Sussex, said “Whether you are looking to gain a qualification, learn a new skill or meet new friends and have fun we believe we have something to offer everyone.”

“We understand that for some people finance can be an issue. At Aspire Sussex, we offer a range of discounts for students aged 65+ and for students on means tested benefit and we always try to ensure finance isn’t a barrier to participating.”

The Autumn/Winter brochure has details on all the courses available which includes Arts and Crafts, Fitness, Computing, Languages, Qualification courses, Music and Dance, plus lots more. Free qualification courses in English and Maths are also available.

To request a brochure to be posted to you, please click here. Alternatively, please browse the website, where full course information can be found for each course. Alternatively, please contact our friendly team on 0345 6 01 01 61.

Art Exhibition at Worthing Museum

Aspire Sussex are pleased to be sponsoring an art exhibition, featuring artwork produced by learners on our courses, at Worthing Museum and Art Gallery.

The exhibition will cover key themes in Art History, such as:

  • Religious Art
  • Natural History
  • Mementos Mori
  • War Art and Propaganda
  • Capricci and Vedute
  • Allegories in Art

Entry to the exhibition is free, and will be running from Saturday 30th July until Saturday 13th August. Please scroll down to see a preview of some of the work on display:


Cilla Isted, Acrylic

Jackie Leocardi, Gouache

Jane Williamson, Ink and Wash

Colin McColloch, Acrylics

Inspiring Adult Education courses from Aspire Sussex

If you would like to take up a new challenge this year, why not join the thousands of people who have already learnt new skills, met new people and had fun on one of our Adult Education courses?

The new countywide Autumn/Winter brochure containing hundreds of learning opportunities is out now.

Robyn Kohler, Chief Executive Officer for Aspire Sussex said: “We’re excited to launch our new brochure, which shows the huge variety of courses we offer in over 80 venues across West Sussex, making learning truly local. We have frozen the fees for the majority of our courses and, for the first time introduced an early bird discount and extended the concessions to students aged 65 and over for June.”

The Autumn / Winter brochure has details on all the courses which includes: arts and crafts, fitness, computing, languages, qualification courses, music and dance plus lots more. Free qualification courses in English and Maths are also available.

The brochure can be viewed online at where printed copies can also be requested, and full course information found. Alternatively, please contact Aspire Sussex on 0345 6 01 01 61.

Hair and Beauty students bring the magic and sparkle of Disney to Burgess Hill

Adult Education Hair and Beauty students in Burgess Hill go head to head later this month as they compete to create the best looks, using Disney as a theme.

The competition takes place on Tuesday 24 May from 5.45pm – 9.00pm at Marle Place Adult Education Centre, Leylands Road, Burgess Hill.

An exciting range of hair, beauty and complementary therapy qualification and non-qualification courses are available in Burgess Hill. Class sizes are kept small to help students get the most from their course. There is an excellent track record of students moving on to work in salons or setting up their own business.

Anyone who is interested in these courses is invited to come along to the competition and find out more. For further information, please contact 01444 810710.

Take your first step to gaining a GCSE

Due to the high demand for free GCSE English and Maths courses, Aspire Sussex Adult Education is taking bookings for assessment from May onwards for entry onto courses in September (conditions apply). This is earlier than usual, in order to meet the high level of demand.

Robyn Kohler, Aspire Sussex CEO, said: “Last year we were overwhelmed by the response from people wanting to do our GCSE courses. We offer a course that takes one year, enabling people to move faster on to other training or employment. We’re assessing potential students much earlier than in previous years to ensure we have sufficient places planned.’ Robyn added ‘These qualifications require hard work and commitment, but are very rewarding and our teams are 100% committed to supporting student’s achievement.”

Assessments usually take around an hour and are important to ensure students get on the right level of course to help them achieve.

One student who has been helped by as course is Jo. When Jo’s son was at primary school, she struggled to understand the maths that her children were learning and a course was put on to help her and other local adults. Jo enjoyed this, progressed onto a Level 1 Maths course and then followed it with a Level 2; both of which she passed. Jo has progressed to a GCSE maths class and volunteers to support other students and share her knowledge and enthusiasm for learning.

For further information on English and maths courses, please contact 0345 6 01 01 61.

Top Marks For Aspire Sussex Adult Education

Aspire Sussex has been awarded Matrix accreditation, which is the unique quality framework for the delivery of information, advice and/or guidance on learning and work. It ensures organisations review, evaluate and develop their service, encourage the take up of professionally recognised qualifications, and the continuous professional development of their staff.

Robyn Kohler, Aspire Sussex Chief Executive Officer said: “Achieving the Matrix standard proves the quality of the service we provide, and highlights the commitment and expertise of the service our staff provide to learners.

Work carries on continuously to improve the assistance provided, enabling thousands of students across West Sussex and beyond to learn, enjoy and develop new skills and gain qualifications.

The assessor inspected Adult Education centres, interviewed over 30 members of staff, spoke to groups of students and partner organisations to get their view of the service and how it works before awarding the standard.

The Matrix standard is made up of four elements: leadership and management, resources, service delivery, and continuous quality improvement.