Category Archives: Adult Learning

Family Learning during Adult Learning Week 2020

by Susan Doherty

A brief history of Family Learning and how it links to Adult Learning in Scotland…

Family Learning encourages family members to learn together as and within a family, with a focus on intergenerational learning. Family learning activities can also be specifically designed to enable parents to learn how to support their children’s learning.

‘Family learning is a powerful method of engagement and learning which can foster positive attitudes towards life-long learning, promote socio-economic resilience and challenge educational disadvantage’ (Family Learning Network, 2016).

To highlight the amazing work in family learning during Adult Learning Week I thought it would be good to reflect on where we have come from and all of the hard work that practitioners have done to get us to where we are today…

In 2016 we worked with practitioners, researchers, policy colleagues and stakeholder/partner agencies to write the Review of Family learning in Scotland. This document set out to capture what practice, research, policy and strategy looked like at that time and set out some key recommendations to take forward. These recommendations formed the building blocks of what family learning looks like in Scotland today.

At its core family learning is an approach to engaging families in learning outcomes that have an impact on the whole family. It can support improved attainment, attitudes towards lifelong learning, health and wellbeing, confidence etc. which leads to positive outcomes for both adults and children. Family learning is a negotiated process born out of the needs of families and the individuals within them. It builds the capacity from where people are and celebrates in their successes. Although universal, family learning can be used as an early intervention and prevention approach which reaches the most disadvantaged communities and can help close the attainment gap through breaking the inter-generational cycles of deprivation and low attainment. For adults this can be the first step to re-engage with their own learning and help them to support their child’s.

Since 2016 we have developed the Family Learning Framework  and informed the Engaging parents and families – A toolkit for practitioners. Family learning is also present in the ELC Realising the Ambition, CLD Adult Learning Statement of Ambition, and HIGIOS 4 and HGIOELC documents. This highlights the breadth of where family learning can and does have an impact – from early learning to adult learning. Practitioners have shaped all of these documents and their voices can be heard throughout.

Engaging families in a family learning programme can have an impact on their immediate identified need however through research we also know it can extend beyond the duration of the intervention and provide lasting impacts and improved outcomes.​

In practice family learning can take many forms which is driven by the needs of the families. Family learning practitioners are creative, nurturing and responsive to the needs of their families and understand their communities and the challenges that they face. They almost always work in partnership which supports robust services that have strong referral pathways for further learning as appropriate. Practice has shown us that practitioners value the time families spend together over a coffee to chat and build relationships and fun is the magic ingredient that keeps them coming back.

We have many wonderful case studies that we can share with you from across Scotland and we would encourage you to look for more on the National Improvement Hub. Here are just some that you may find interesting:

For more information on Family Learning, Parental Involvement/Engagement and Learning at Home, or to share your practice, please contact: susan.doherty@educationscotland.gov.scot and/or beverley.ferguson@educationscotland.gov.scot

 

Adult Learners Week 2020

This week is Adult Learners Week 2020 in Scotland. We want to highlight all of the fantastic work that Community Learning and Development (CLD) do to deliver high quality adult learning opportunities across a wider variety of areas. These include social isolation, health and wellbeing, digital inclusion, English as a Second Language (ESOL) , literacies, numeracy/maths, family learning, community inclusion, progression pathways, financial inclusion, personal development and active citizenship. 

  The thing that surprises most people about CLD is the variety of roles and diversity of learning that is covered. People who work in CLD often have a variety of disciplines to cover and ensure they are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to provide these. The CLD Standards Council is the professional body for people who work or volunteer in CLD. 

 Adult Literacy & Numeracy in Scotland follows a social practice model. It looks at the skills, knowledge and understanding that a learner has to build on and relates learning to a context within personal, family, working or community life. Provision is offered in a learner centred way and can use real life resources such as bills, letters, newspapers or other household resources to support learning to have a real life context. 

Community based ESOL is delivered by CLD teams across Scotland. Scotland has supported the Syrian Resettlement Scheme in recent years which also links to ESOL provision and wider CLD activity in communities although this can look different in different local authorities.  ESOL learners can come from any country in the world and groups can be made up of a variety of languages and cultures. 

 Community based adult learning in CLD can cover a wide variety of learning opportunities that are intended to be informal, relaxed, friendly opportunities that aim to break down barriers for learners who are hardest to reach. These can be adults with multiple barriers such as mental health, physical health, learning difficulties, alcohol and drug addictions, long term unemployment and social isolation among others. 

CLD Adult Learning covers a variety of areas such as confidence building, health issues, bereavement, life changes (such as divorce, redundancy) focussing on areas of high deprivation where poverty impacts on households and families. 

 CLD is a value-based practice and CLD professionals have committed themselves to the values of self-determination, inclusion, empowerment, working collaboratively and the promotion of adult learning as a lifelong activity. Programmes and activities are developed in dialogue with communities and participants, working particularly with those excluded from participation in the decisions and processes that shape their lives. 

 The focus of CLD in all areas of adult learning are improved life chances for people of all ages, through learning, personal development and active citizenship resulting in  stronger, more resilient, supportive, influential and inclusive communities. 

 The Education Scotland CLD Team works to support the CLD sector in delivering high quality learning opportunities relevant to the communities that are in need. The team supports professional learning across different areas of adult learning in CLD and supports the creation of new policies and strategies. They are keen to share and promote interesting practice that is of interest delivered by CLD workers who work tirelessly to improve the communities and individuals they work with.   

Follow @edscotcld for more information

Adult Learners Week 2020 – 5 Days of Celebration

Scotland’s Learning partnership has organised a week of events to celebrate Adult Learner’s Week 2020 

The 29th celebration of Adult Learners’ Week in Scotland is very
different from our normal programme of activities – social distancing makes getting together a little harder. The lack of technology skills and tools make it all the more challenging, but adult learners across Scotland are still planning on having a good celebration

The Morning Sessions are open to everyone
to join learners and providers. These sessions are from 11.00 – 12.30.
The Afternoon Sessions are specially designed by learners
with learners and for learners only.

Monday 7th September: Let’s Talk Participation                                   

Ten years is a long time, but no time at all. Join us to hear how far we’ve come when we talk about participation. The Learning and Work Institute’s national participation survey has its roots in the early Adult Learners’ Week campaigns so join us for expert input from Sir Alan Tuckett and Dr Fiona Aldridge to find out how things have changed in the last 10 years and talk about what we need to do and meet the Minister for Adult Learning Richard Lochhead. Sign up here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/lets-talk-participation-tickets-116613428905

Tuesday 8th September: Scotland Connects

This year’s Adult Learners’ Week is timed to celebrate with colleagues across the world, connecting with colleagues in Europe and beyond to help develop a world worth living in. Meeting with Cabinet Secretary Michael Russell, Chief Executive Niamh O’Reilly, AONTAS and Edicio Dela Torre, President of the Education for Life Foundation to talk about our learning connections and champions and how we benefit. Sign up here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/scotland-connects-tickets-116618991543

Wednesday 9th September: Adult Learning & Health

Health literacy became extremely important during a pandemic –
Presentations from Lord Nigel Crisp, Co-chair All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health; Jason Leitch, National Clinical Director, Scottish Government; Glynne Roberts, Programme Director (Well North Wales); and FALNI, Northern Ireland will delight and inspire us to think about how we better link with health across the country and ensure learning is at its heart. Sign up here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-health-tickets-116621033651

Thursday 10th September: Work and Learning

Adult Learning at work, for work and in work – a day of celebrations and achievements-hearing from some of the great projects people are involved in across the country. Join us for some inspiration and challenge our thinking about work-based learning, learning for work and learning in work. Meet Ed Gibbon from Stirling Council, WEA, James Russell from SDS and Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Business, Fair work and Skills and let’s talk about the role that adult learning can play in the recovery. Sign up here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/work-and-learning-tickets-116622451893

Elevenses Celebration
Adapting to the situation and making changes, meeting online, sending out learning packs, calling people to see if they’re okay we will be sharing cake and a cuppa with learners and providers across Scotland.

CLD Response to Covid-19: North Lanarkshire Council

Community Learning and Development (CLD) response during COVID -19 lockdown

North Lanarkshire Council – Adult Learning Delivery

Continuing our series of case studies from the West Region on the amazing response of CLD during COVID-19 lockdown we now want to highlight work from North Lanarkshire Council CLD Adult Learning Team.

Across North Lanarkshire Council the CLD Adult Learning Team has continued delivering their CLD service throughout the COVID lockdown period. Initially the CLD staff kept the lines of communication open and established the best way to keep in touch with all learners considering the range of devices being used and the level of learners’ digital involvement. The CLD – Communities and Adult Learning Team looked to ensure that fundamental needs were covered such as information on what was going on, access to food and prescriptions and support for those in isolation.

The speed of response by CLD staff was most impressive and all learners had established contact very early on. The flexible approach took into consideration the position of each individual learner. e.g. WhatsApp groups, Facebook pages, Zoom – all mediums were utilised depending on what learners were best able to engage with reflecting the social practice approach. There also had to be consideration of learners that did not access social media or were not online in anyway. Some learners were contacted by phone and door step drops of learning packs and resources if required. The focus was prioritised around learning and health and well-being.

Highlights:

  • Learning Packs – ALN & ESOL

(Measuring, puzzle books, writing activities, Summer Reading Program)

(ESOL- photo dictionaries, SQA materials, Worksheets)

  • Pivot Garden – Updates posted on progress of newly completed garden and seedlings. Learners were able to access the garden individually and do some upkeep and gardening. Seedlings ‘adopted’ by Community Worker and when established delivered to learners for individual planting.

  • Wednesday Walk – Digital Health Walk – regular timetabled walking activity with theme, promoted via text and social media. Encourages learners to be more physically active and raises awareness of their mental wellbeing. Participants take photos on a positive theme – recent topics have included trees and bees and encouraging mindfulness. Participants then share their photos on social media, increasing their sense of connection. Nature themed topics have been extended with links to materials and activities from Cumbernauld Living Landscapes to encourage further learning.
  • Facebook pages for groups – Motherwell has 3 private Facebook groups set up: Gaelic Culture, Northern Lights Discovery and COLTS Discovery Group.  The learners are able to be in contact with one another and share photographs of their current activities and trips from last term. The Gaelic Culture Group have now set up Facebook Room within their private group; every Tuesday from 1-3pm they meet up for a video chat, practise their language skills together and do a short quiz. One group member who had been housebound over the last term has enjoyed being able to re-join her group online.  The Discovery learners have all kept on track with their activities during lockdown and one learner has just achieved her Silver Award. Wishaw Family History Group have a private Facebook Groups which allows the learners to keep in touch and share photographs of their current family tress and any progress made on their work. The group ‘meet’ weekly for a Facebook video chat: this allows them to socialise with one another, check in with the Support Worker for welfare purposes and share any new findings. Not only has the Facebook group decreased social isolation it has also allowed for learners to learn new IT Skills and explore avenues on social media platforms that they didn’t know existed!
  • ESOL Online -Aimed at ESOL learners and resettlement refugees. Delivered by Community workers, Support workers and Social Work. Ongoing WhatsApp groups where work is posted and a group for information sharing on Covid developments in Arabic & English. Weekly video calls and lessons for each learner. Difficulties were /are mainly which platform to use and longer term the need for a VLE set up for learners to submit work and track progress. Staff need for training in the use of digital online learning platforms and managing of social media.

CLD Response to Covid-19: East Renfrewshire Council

Community Learning and Development (CLD) response during COVID -19 lockdown

 East Renfrewshire Adult Learning & Adult Literacies Services

Continuing our case studies from the West Region on the amazing response of CLD during COVID-19 lockdown, we now want to highlight work from East Renfrewshire Adult Learning & Adult Literacies Services.

During lockdown, East Renfrewshire Council transformed their service to meet the needs of adult learners during the COVID-19 lockdown crisis.  Staff created online learning provision for those who had digital access, whilst recognising that many of the adult learners only had phones, with and without internet access, and that had to be taken into account to ensure the support remained inclusive.  The work that was carried out is a great testament to the CLD staff who have been creative, resourceful and enthusiastic about maintaining links with the community.  East Renfrewshire CLD have positive partnerships and these have been important throughout. In particular, for people in receipt of benefits as some were worried that their money would be affected if they weren’t online and seeking work.  Learning has been a lifeline for almost all adult learners in relation to their wellbeing.  Some people didn’t want to continue with learning but wanted an opportunity to stay connected with the team and/or their group.  CLD staff have been able to provide this support through phone calls and online forums.

There has been a strong focus on wellbeing during this difficult time. Over the past year or so, CLD Adult Learning and Adult Literacies staff had been evaluating the wellbeing provision and had implemented changes including the creation of wellbeing hour and development days for staff. All of the resources and activities developed for staff could be tailored for adult learners throughout our provision.  Wellbeing is at the heart of everything that East Renfrewshire CLD offer whether it’s a wellbeing group or an IT group. From the initial meeting through to the guidance and exit processes a learner centred approach is taken. Staff have benefitted from CLPL opportunities through partnerships within the authority and through membership of the West CLD Alliance, including the NHSGG&C Healthy Minds partnership.

 SQA Wellbeing units

Working in partnership with West College Scotland, CLD staff began looking at the course content and descriptors of the SQA Wellbeing units and were very keen to deliver these.The courses would be beneficial for individuals in relation to their own wellbeing but also transferrable to work related goals. In August 2019, we advertised the first unit, Exploring Wellbeing; SCQF: level 4. Referrals for this course came from within the service, Family First, RAMH and other partners. The course was popular and successful with adult learners positively evaluating the course and successfully achieving accreditation.  The group progressed to the next unit, Improving Wellbeing SCQF: level 4 in January 2020. When we were informed of lockdown the group were genuinely disappointed and hoping for a quick return. This group had already created a WhatsApp group to stay connected out with the course times.  This allowed staff to connect with the group during lockdown to make sure they had all of the information and support they required.

Some people chose not to continue learning during lockdown for various reasons, however, staff kept in contact with them at their request, as they were feeling isolated. For the online learning we found a platform that would work for everyone and provided digital support to ensure everyone could participate.

Working towards achieving accreditation provided a valuable focus for learners during this time. The assessment had been introduced a few weeks into the course and this helped the learners to know what was expected and allowed them to continue with their project from home. They received support from the Adult Learning Services CLD worker and the West College Scotland lecturer; including phone calls, emails and text messages, as well as the online video meetings. In addition to achieving a qualification, the main benefit for the group has been keeping people connected. Three of the group members live by themselves and keeping in touch with others has been a huge help throughout this difficult time. Positive quotes posted on the group chat, comments from other peers and just being able to chat to others has been a huge motivator for the learners and staff.  Working in partnership with West College Scotland, we have submitted our proposal for the Group Award: Mental Health and Wellbeing at SCQF level 4, due to start in September 2020 based on evaluations and consultations with adult learners.

 Staff Feedback

It was such a privilege as a CLD Worker to be working with this group. They were so unique in many ways, not only because of the pandemic. They were such a caring group and so enthusiastic, right from the very start. They were also very appreciative of anything I helped them with. They genuinely cared for each other and formed a bond, with not a single person left out. They were such an inspiration to me.  It reminded me of the reason why I enjoy my job!

 Learner Quotes

  • It helped me gain confidence and be more relaxed to be myself.
  • It was very easy to contribute in class but also during lockdown through emails and the WhatsApp group.
  • It has made me think about the way I was living my life. It was too complicated and too fast. Now I stop and think before I do anything.
  • I get lots more exercise now. I didn’t used to do as much but now I feel better for getting out and walking.

 

Big CLD Blether

John Galt, CLD Education Officer reflects on the Big CLD Blether

I’ve been absolutely blown away by the amazing response of the community learning and development (CLD) sector to the Covid-19 crisis. While the lockdown obviously led to the abrupt suspension of most face to face CLD activities, from the start we’ve been hearing examples of how community workers, youth workers, adult educators and family learning workers in both the public and third sectors have continued to support learners and communities with dedication, creativity and kindness. Across Scotland, CLD practitioners have been supporting community initiatives to deliver food, medicine or provide vital social contact to vulnerable families and isolated people; engaging with young people through imaginative digital youth work; adapting learning activities to be accessible online, by phone or through resources to use at home; and helping to extend the reach of school and community hubs for children of key workers and vulnerable families. Many CLD providers are now playing a key role in helping to develop local and national recovery plans.

So I was delighted to help to facilitate The Big CLD Blether  – a virtual discussion with over 90 CLD practitioners and managers across Scotland which was jointly hosted by Education Scotland and The CLD Standards Council for Scotland on 28th May. The session was one of a series held throughout May to support practitioners from across the education system. (#ESBigBlether)

One of the challenges in our diverse sector is finding common digital platforms to use. We went for Google Meet for The Big CLD Blether which seemed to work well for most people.

The discussions were based around four themes and participants chose which ones to take part in. We were lucky to have 3 or 4 experienced practitioners in each themed discussion who shared their experiences and addressed questions from other participants. There were a lot of issues raised in each of the four discussions. Notes from the session will be available on iDevelop but here are some of the points raised:

Theme one: Operational challenges for CLD providers

Participants recognised the good work being done to support the changing needs of learners and communities. CLD organisations are also dealing with significant challenges though. Many 3rd sector organisations are facing extreme financial pressures and some staff had been furloughed. In some areas, local authority CLD staff had been redeployed. Many have been realigning what they do to engage learners and communities remotely while trying to address the clear digital inequalities that exist in our communities. The move to digital is a steep learning curve for many and so effective professional learning for staff is key. There is a strong recognition of the need to support the health and wellbeing of learners and staff.

Theme two: Engagement and learning – what’s working well?

Examples of what is working well were threaded through each of the discussion groups.  We heard about the wide range of digital platforms being used by CLD providers to engage young people, adult learners and community groups. We heard lots of examples of practitioners being flexible and endeavouring to start where learners are at online and we were reminded of the Digitally Agile CLD principles and the great resources out there, such as those on digital youth work from YouthLink. There were frustrations at the limitations that some organisations placed on using some platforms, although there was a recognition of the increased importance of digital safety. We heard that Youth Awards like Hi-5 and Saltire are being widely used to recognise young people’s volunteering during the crisis and that as lockdown eases, there is an increasing focus on supporting young people through street work.

 Theme 3: Supporting the health and wellbeing of CLD participants and staff

CLD practitioners can help participants to address the impacts of staying at home and feelings of grief, worry, stress or loneliness. We heard some of the feedback from the Lockdown Lowdown study which led to discussions on how can we best support the mental wellbeing of young people now and as lockdown continues to ease. Meanwhile feedback from the CLD Standards Council practitioner survey highlighted that many workers were dealing with stress themselves. Effective CPD and peer support are increasingly important priorities for practitioners.

Theme 4: Looking forward – the role of CLD in the recovery phase.

CLD practitioners have important roles to play – in education recovery plans and in wider community renewal. There are many opportunities for CLD to contribute including outdoor learning, blended learning with schools, supporting parents and families, youth awards etc. broad range of services, showcase ourselves. CLD workers will also have key roles to support community groups and organisations to rebuild and help to rebuild partnership working and collaboration to ensure that resources are deployed to best effect. Much of the focus for recovery planning will be at the local level and it is important that CLD partners are involved. There will also be an increasing need for CLD to support wider regional and national collaboration to support ‘building back better’ efforts. Participants were keen to maintain some of the new processes that have been put in place during lockdown.

Feedback about The Big CLD Blether was positive. Participants told us that they enjoyed re-connecting with CLD colleagues and discussing experiences and  pieces of work going well.

Both Education Scotland and the CLD Standards Council are keen to keep the discussions going with further CLD ‘blethers’ so please watch this space!

 

 

Upcoming webinars and online opportunities for CLD

The Education Scotland team have collated a number of webinars and online opportunities hosted by ourselves and others that may be of relevance to CLD practitioners and managers. See details of dates, times, platform where available and link for signing up below.

Monday 21st September: 10 – 11.30am, Youth Scotland: Social Circus Workshop, Zoom, https://bit.ly/3lRfcP4

Thursday 24th September: 10 – 12noon, Youth Scotland: Games, games, Games Training, Zoom, https://bit.ly/3ij7MC4

Thursday 24th September: 11 – 12.30pm, Third Sector Lab: DigiShift – 15 digital actions every charity should implement, Zoom, https://bit.ly/2ZCEpmR

Tuesday 29th September: 10 – 11.15am, Youth Scotland: Digital Training: Session 1 Youth Work in the Digital Age, Zoom, https://bit.ly/32t8ver

Tuesday 29th September: 1 – 2.15pm, Youth Scotland: Digital Training: Session 2 Youth Work in the Digital Age, Zoom, https://bit.ly/3htnFoc

Tuesday 29th September: 2 -3pm, Education Scotland and CLD Standards Council: CLD Practitioners Health & Wellbeing, https://bit.ly/3c9YoOI

Wednesday 30th September: 11am – 12pm, Education Scotland: CLD Adult Literacy webinar, Google Meet, https://bit.ly/3avY7F2

Wednesday 30th September: 2 – 3.30pm, Youth Scotland: Social Circus Workshop, Zoom, https://bit.ly/35ySaXy

Thursday 1st October: 10 – 12.30pm, Youth Scotland: Child Protection Awareness, Zoom, https://bit.ly/3gtdWOe

Monday 5th October: 2 – 3.15pm, Education Scotland and CLD Standards Council: Digital/blended delivery of CLD and what professional learning is required to support it, Zoom, https://bit.ly/2FCtkeR

Tuesday 6th October: 12 – 1pm, Education Scotland: CLD, Challenge Poverty Week Twitter chat, follow and comment @edscotcld (no need to sign up)

Thursday 22nd October: 6 – 8.30pm, Youth Scotland: Child Protection Awareness, Zoom, https://bit.ly/3lc5lmL

Tuesday 27th October: 10 – 12noon, Youth Scotland: Filmmaking with Groups workshop, Zoom, https://bit.ly/2QuxBmx

Thursday 29th October: 4 – 5pm, Education Scotland: End of the Day DYW Blether: Personal learning and Achievement, https://bit.ly/3kiSrTn

Tuesday 17th November: 4 – 5pm, Education Scotland: Discussing gender stereotypes with families and in communities, https://bit.ly/2GZAbzn

Monday 14th December: 4 – 5pm, Education Scotland: End of the Day DYW Blether: Personal learning and Achievement, https://bit.ly/3kiSrTn

Monday 8th February: 4 – 5pm, Education Scotland: End of the Day DYW Blether: Personal learning and Achievement, https://bit.ly/3kiSrTn

Also check out https://bit.ly/3fN7Fgi and https://bit.ly/2V4g5Iw for a range of pre-recorded webinars from the Education Scotland Digital Skills team. These were created for formal education setting, but the content will be a just as relevant to CLD practitioners. For example, learn how to use Microsoft Forms for quizzes and surveys or watch the session on online gaming and gambling.

Please contact Susan.Epsworth@educationscotland.gov.scot if you would like us to promote something on your behalf

Regional CLD Engagement Events

We’re working with the Scottish Government, local CLD partners and CLD Standards Council to host 10 Regional Engagement Events on Adult Learning and CLD policy. The morning sessions will focus on consultation on the development of the new Adult Learning Strategy and the afternoon will allow an opportunity for partners to explore the local and national context for CLD. See sign up details for each region below:

Northern Alliance (Elgin 24th February)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-elgin-tickets-91278708073

West (Glasgow 25th February)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-glasgow-tickets-91381956893

South East (Edinburgh 27th February)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-edinburgh-tickets-91351882941

Forth Valley and West Lothian (Livingston 5th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-livingston-tickets-91349461699

Tayside (Dundee 11th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-dundee-tickets-91380358111

Northern Alliance (Aberdeen 16th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-aberdeen-tickets-91350498801

South West (Dumfries 17th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-dumfries-tickets-91356221919

West (Coatbridge 18th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-coatbridge-tickets-91383948851

South East (Galashiels 24th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-galashiels-tickets-91352472705

South West (Ayr 27th March)

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adult-learning-collaborating-for-improvement-regional-events-ayr-tickets-91357575969

 

 

 

Adult Learning Strategy sub group update

 Following the first meeting of the Adult Learning Strategic Forum for Scotland (ALSFS), in September, the Adult Learning Strategy Sub-Group set about getting 5 consultative workshops and an adult learning survey underway. 

By late-October, the learning survey was up and running (https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/AdultLearningSurvey2019/).  This will remain live until at least the end of November, so please encourage and support your learners to participate.

The Strategy Sub-Group would like to thank the partners and colleagues who participated in the recent strategic themed workshops.  These were organised around the themes of:

The Adult Learning Offer and Planning Progression

Advice and Guidance

Access, Empowerment and Change

Learning for Work

Workforce Development

 The rich discussion led to outputs and actions which the Sub-Group are now reviewing.  These will be reported to ALSFS when it next meets in December. Although still early in its conception, work around the new Adult Learning Strategy has already gathered momentum and it’s hoped that colleagues and partners are already enjoying a sense of involvement and ownership of the strategy, which is expected in late 2020. 

If you haven’t had the chance to input into the strategy yet, further consultation is planned over the coming months for local services, practitioners and learners – dates and locations to follow.  We look forward to seeing you there.

 

Focus on Adult Learning in CLD

This month marks 100 years of Adult Learning. Across our communication channels we have been busy highlighting the campaign and the work that Community Learning and Development (CLD) covers in adult learning.

The thing that surprises most people about CLD is the variety of roles and diversity of learning that is covered. People who work in CLD often have a variety of disciplines to cover and ensure they are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to provide these. The CLD Standards Council is the professional body for people who work or volunteer in CLD.

Adult literacy & Numeracy in Scotland follows a social practice model. It looks at the skills, knowledge and understanding that a learner has to build on and relates learning to a context within personal, family, working or community life. Provision is offered in a learner centred way and can use real life resources such as bills, letters, newspapers or other household resources to support learning to have a real life context.

ESOL is English for Speakers of other languages and community based ESOL is delivered by CLD teams across Scotland. Scotland has supported the Syrian Resettlement Scheme in recent years which also links to ESOL provision and wider CLD activity in communities although this can look different in different local authorities. ESOL learners can come from any country in the world and groups can be made up of a variety of languages and cultures.

Community based adult learning in Community Learning and Development (CLD) can cover a wide variety of learning opportunities that are intended to be informal, relaxed, friendly opportunities that aim to break down barriers for learners who are hardest to reach. These can be adults with multiple barriers such as mental health, physical health, learning difficulties, alcohol and drug addictions, long term unemployment and social isolation among others.

Adult learning in CLD covers a variety of areas such as confidence building, health issues, bereavement, life changes (such as divorce or redundancy) focussing on areas of high deprivation where poverty impacts on households and families.

CLD is a value-based practice and CLD professionals have committed themselves to the values of self-determination, inclusion, empowerment, working collaboratively and the promotion of adult learning as a lifelong activity. Programmes and activities are developed in dialogue with communities and participants, working particularly with those excluded from participation in the decisions and processes that shape their lives.

The focus of CLD in all areas of adult learning are improved life chances for people of all ages, through learning, personal development and active citizenship with stronger, more resilient, supportive, influential and inclusive communities.

The Education Scotland CLD Team works to support the CLD sector in delivering high quality learning opportunities relevant to the communities that are in need. The Education Scotland CLD Team supports professional learning across different areas of adult learning in CLD and supports the creation of new policies and strategies. The team is keen to share and promote interesting practice that is of interest delivered by CLD workers who work tirelessly to improve the communities and individuals they work with. Get in touch if there is a piece of work you would like us to share! Contact Laura.McIntosh@educationscotland.gov.scot for more information.