THE adult learning centre in the spotlight after claims it turned away a mother for driving theory lessons because of her ethnic origin today admitted: "We made a mistake."
Liaqat Ali Hussain, chairman of the Neighbourhood Learning Centre, Thornton Lodge, said the poster seen by mother-of-one Niki Trepak, of Crosland Moor, advertising free tuition included a typing error.
He said: "We are putting up our hands and admitting there has been a typing error.
"But she was not told she couldn't do the course because of her skin colour - it was her ethnicity."
He said the course, displayed as being available to anyone over 16 and covering the £20.50 cost of the theory test, was designed for people who were struggling with language barriers.
He said: "The criteria for the course is based on ethnicity. It is for people who have language barriers.
"We help them fill in relevant forms, teach them how to use computers and how to practise the driving theory test on a computer using the relevant package. They also have a bi-lingual tutor to help them."
But he admitted the poster had been misleading in failing to mention the course was only available to people from ethnic minorities.
He said: "I feel sorry for her because I know how I would be feeling.
"We have taken the posters down and suspended the course until we get further clarification."
He revealed the centre's management committee had also held an emergency meeting to address the problem and put strategy in place to get to the bottom of it.
He said: "A typing error has caused this unfortunate incident and this cannot be tolerated.
"We will be responding to this lady and taking it from there."
The Examiner revealed on Thursday how the Learning and Skills Council, which funds the centre, was also investigating the running of the course.