3 July Research Seminar

June 18, 2013 in Education by Tony Wright


GoWe invite you to participate in our ground-breaking Catalyst Seminars.
Please confirm your attendance today by clicking the link.


Research for Innovation: Myths, Facts and Case Studies 3rd July at 9am

Bringing theory and practice together, previewing a new technological prototype, and lunch!

Don’t forget Situating Social Innovation tomorrow at 2pm


Catalyst Research Seminar
Interdisciplinary Research for Innovation: Myths, Facts and Case Studies
3/07/2013 – 9:00 to 2:15
Lancaster University Management School, Lecture Theatre 2.

Myth! Interdisciplinary research is inherently ‘good’. Good for whom? The ‘community’, businesses, the researchers themselves?
Good for what? Incremental, radical, disruptive, mundane: what kind of innovation?

The Catalyst project invites all scholars of innovation to a half-day research seminar to discuss the value and ‘values’, challenges, lessons learned, failures and successes of interdisciplinary research.

Join our invited speakers Alan Blackwell(Cambridge) and David Tyfield(Lancaster). Participate in the discussion with our panellists; Jon Whittle(Lancaster), Leanne Morrison(Southampton), Iain Gilchrist (Bristol), and Alastair Buckley(Sheffield) who represent – four exciting projects funded by the EPRSC Cross Disciplinary Interfaces Programme (CDIP). Followed by the first public preview of a new technological prototype from the Catalyst project ‘Access ASD’. The seminar will bring ’state-of-the-art’ academic research in interdisciplinary innovation to the forefront in addition to investigating what actually happens on the ‘ground’.

9.00     Registration & Coffee
9.20     Catalystas Introduction
9.30     ’Living in Metaphors: Catalysis and Crucibles’
             Alan Blackwell 
             Chair: Ruth McNally, Anglia Ruskin

10.15   ‘From Disruptive Innovation to Sociotechnical Systems
             Transition?’ David Tyfield

11.00   Coffee break
11.15   C-DIP Projects & Panel Discussions
             Chair: Gordon Blair, Lancaster

12.15   Comfort break
12.20   Access ASD Show and Tell of new prototype
             Chair: Maria Angela Ferrario, Lancaster

13.15   Lunch
14.15   Ends

Please reserve your place: http://catalystseminarjuly.eventbrite.co.uk

Alan Blackwell
Alan Blackwell is Reader in Interdisciplinary Design at the University of Cambridge, and co-founder of the Crucible Network for Research in Interdisciplinary Design. Following degrees in Engineering, Comparative Religion, Computer Science and Psychology, he has lately become resigned to a reputation as Jack of all trades (and correspondingly, master of none). He is the lead author of the NESTA policy research report “Creating value across boundaries: Maximising the return from interdisciplinary innovation.”
‘Living in Metaphors: Catalysis and crucibles’ The Crucible network for research in interdisciplinary design has been operating since 2001. In this time, network members have coordinated and participated in more than 150 design projects, exhibitions, performances, and reflexive policy interventions. This talk will reflect on the strategic objectives and operating methods of Crucible, taking the scientific/industrial metaphor of the crucible as a starting point for comparison with the diverse activities of the Catalyst project.
David Tyfield
David Tyfield is a Lecturer in the Sociology Department and Co-Director of the Centre for Mobilities Research (CeMoRe) at Lancaster University. His research focuses on the interaction of political economy, social change and developments in science, technology and innovation, with a particular focus on issues of low-carbon transition in China. He is lead author of the NESTA report ‘Game-Changing China: Lessons from China about Disruptive Low Carbon Innovation’ (2010, in English and Mandarin), author of The Economics of Science (Routledge, 2012 in 2 volumes) and is currently working on a new book titled Innovation & Inequality: From the Crisis of Neoliberalism to Liberalism 2.0.
‘From Disruptive Innovation to Sociotechnical Systems Transition?’ The idea of ‘disruptive innovation’ is an increasingly ubiquitous buzzword, yet many casual uses of the term miss its essential and unique characteristics. This talk will explore the various social, cultural and political conditions that would need to be in place for disruptive innovations to translate into socio-technical systems. We will consider some of the recent discussion, and anxieties, regarding the potential implications of massively open online courses (MOOCs) for research and teaching in higher education, including interdisciplinary research.


Catalyst, Lancaster: Catalyst brings together academics and communities to jointly imagine and build the next generation of tools for social change, and to explore innovative, bottom-up technology-mediated solutions to major problems in society. Now half way through, the three year project the team share world-leading theoretical underpinnings and state of the art insights from social science, computing, design and management studies. Across a series of sub-projects ‘Sprints’ and ‘Launchpads’ communities and academics have come together to envision and build next generation tools, using technology to make ‘the world’ a better place.

Jon Whittle
Jon Whittle, Catalyst PI, is Professor and Chair of Software Engineering in the Department of Computing at Lancaster University. His interests are in software modeling, where “model” is to be broadly interpreted — to include requirements, architecture and design models, but also other types of models found in modern software, such as ontology models. His most recent work is typified by a desire for software and software engineering methods to have a visible impact on society and on the lives of those living in it.
Jon has a PhD from the University of Edinburgh, worked at NASA Ames Research Center, and was an Associate Professor at George Mason University in Virginia. He’s taught across the world, most notably at India’s prestigious IIT. Jon’s research has been funded by the EPSRC, NASA, the FAA, Aerospace Corporation and the Royal Society.

UBhave, Southampton: UBhave is a multidisciplinary research programme examining the power and challenges of using new digital technologies to deliver behaviour change interventions. Specifically the project examines the feasibility and acceptability of using Smartphones and online social networking to deliver and disseminate behaviour change interventions for weight management and positive well-being. New systems architectures, algorithms, and intelligent triggering systems have been designed, with new statistical, visualisation and open source tools in development, to enable researchers and those with little or no programming experience to create and evaluate their own Smartphone-based interventions.

Leanne MorrisonDr Leanne Morrison is a Senior Research Fellow in Psychology, University of Southampton. Leanne’s primary research interests lie in the use of digital technologies to deliver interventions designed to change health-related behaviours. She is particularly interested in furthering understanding of how we can enhance users’ engagement with these interventions and optimise health-related outcomes. Leanne is currently working on the UBhave project, led by Professor Lucy Yardley.

Decision Making in an Unstable World, Bristol: For humans and machines decision making is not always simple. Sometimes the world changes so quickly that experience does not always tell you how to behave. Humans can cope reasonably well in this unstable and complicated world but we don’t have a full understanding of how they do this. Solving this problem requires a wide range of researchers from very different backgrounds to work together; a team from Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, Psychology, Economics, Earth Sciences, Geography, Neurology, Education and Biology. We have planned a range of activities to help build a common language and understanding which will result in a new and sustainable community of decision making researchers.

Iain GilchristIain D. Gilchrist – Professor of Neuropsychology, University of Bristol. Iain studied Psychology as an undergraduate at Durham University and then carried out a PhD in Cognitive Science at Birmingham University. Following research jobs in Strasbourg and Durham in 1999 he moved to Bristol as a Lecturer where he has been ever since. The core focus of his research has been on how visual information in humans is used to guide action. This interest has led to a wide range of interdisciplinary collaborations and project including: studies of CCTV operators in control rooms, studies of search and foraging in children with autism and the eye movements of horses. He is a former Director of Bristol Neuroscience, lead the development of The Bristol Clinical Research and Imaging Centre, is a Chartered Psychologist and Fellow of the British Psychological Society.

Solar Energy for Future Societies, Sheffield: Our objective is to explore knowledge about solar energy research with publics and communities. An interdisciplinary academic team, includes staff from Physics, Geography, Architecture and EEE working alongside local residents from the town of Stocksbridge, Sheffield. Through workshops, informal meetings and exhibitions the team explores questions related to renewable energy, aiming to bridge the gap between ‘public’ knowledge and that of the scientific community. Emerging from such interactions, are a number of local projects which address issues related to renewable energy and sustainability.

Dr Alastair Buckley, University of Sheffield is the PI for the Solar Energies for Future Societies Project. Alastair comes to this project with a science and manufacturing background. He graduated in Chemical Physics in 1996 followed by a PhD in surface science relating to lighting. In 2000 he moved to an Edinburgh start up company exploiting organic light emitting devices for miniature consumer displays. Following the company’s growth to 70 employees and 100000 displays per month and subsequent cashflow induced demise he returned to academia in 2008 joining the department of Physics and Astronomy in Sheffield. Since then he has researched organic PV technology and solar energy; particularly looking for new ways to address the solar energy topic.

For further information about the Catalyst Seminars contact: d.stubbs@lancaster.ac.uk
Associated Catalyst Staff: http://www.catalystproject.org.uk/content/project-team

Your Input for the All Party Parliamentary Inquiry on the Value of HE to BME communities

June 17, 2013 in Education by Tony Wright

Black British Academics has been invited to participate in the upcoming All Party Parliamentary Inquiry on Higher Education taking place this summer/autumn. Runnymede provides secretariat support to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Race and Community and it is through invitation by Runnymede that we have been invited to contribute baseline data and to make recommendations for the final report to be published in the autumn. The purpose of the inquiry is to investigate and evaluate the barriers faced by Black and Minority Ethnic students, with a particular focus on the number of entrants in further and higher education, Black and Minority Ethnic postgraduate students and Black and Minority Ethnic University Professors. The inquiry will be looking at:

  • Provisions currently in place to support BME applicants in further and higher education and support networks for professors and academic positions.
  • BME applications and entrants across a number of further education institutions, including the Russell Group Universities.  

An inquiry committee will be formed soon – meetings are taking place this week to review written and oral evidence sessions, discussion groups and terms of reference.
We will be back in touch shortly with further information as soon as it is available. Your participation is important as tackling racial inequality in higher education is one of our key objectives and this inquiry is a key platform for us to voice our concerns, articulate they key problems and make recommendations for change. 

Upcoming articles in the Guardian Higher Education Network

A big thank you to all the members who have come forward to give their input to the features being written on race equality in higher education. There will now be two articles to allow for all the necessary ground to be covered – one will focus on the views of Vice Chancellors, Pro Vice Chancellors and Deputy Vice Chancellors on where we are on race equality in HE, what they are doing to tackle the problems and whether a more radical approach is needed to advance the cause.

The second will focus on the views of black academics on where we are, the key barriers, what action should be taken and some examples of black academics tackling the issues in a myriad of ways, including but not limited to mentoring and research. Interviews are being completed this week – if anyone would still like to give their input (this is open to all members whether associates, full members or undergraduates) please email Deborah Gabriel at info@blackbritishacademics.co.uk

This Week’s Featured Member

This week’s featured member is criminologist Dr Martin Glynn who for his PhD thesis developed a critical race theory on desistance, using the narratives of black men. He has over 25 years of experience in the prison service and schools and is an acclaimed writer and director. Visit the website to read more

 Launch of Black British Academics at the UEL 8th Colloquium on Ethnic Relations – July 25
Have you registered yet for the 8th Colloquium on Ethnic Relations at the Royal Docks Business School, University of East London on July 25, which is to be followed by the launch of Black British Academics? This is a must-not-miss event! Please mark the date in your diary and remember to register by emailing Barbara Bannister, Events Assistant at the Noon Centre for Equality and Diversity in Business at b.bannister@uel.ac.uk DO IT NOW!!!

Labour to drop opposition to free schools in major policy change

June 15, 2013 in Education by Tony Wright

Shadow Secretary of State for Education Stephen TwiggStephen Twigg will announce parents would be welcome to set up their own schools – but with tough controls. Mirror.co.uk http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/labour-drop-opposition-free-schools-1953608#ixzz2WKIeMZun

Talking Wellbeing training

March 30, 2013 in Education, Health by Tony Wright

Talking Wellbeing training

NHS North West have commissioned Our Life to run training on Talking Wellbeing. Talking Wellbeing is a discussion kit that supports a five-step workshop exploring wellbeing in a guided yet flexible way. It is aimed at young people aged between 14-19 and can be used with groups of between three to ten participants. The kit will be of interest to a wide range of people working with or needing to involve young people. For more information on the Talking Wellbeing training click here.

Training dates:

Friday 7th June 2013: Manchester 10.00am-12.30pm

Thursday 13th June 2013: Preston 1.30pm-4.00pm


Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Anyone interested in attending the workshop should email their name, position, organisation and contact details to Sue Millichap by the closing date of 13th May 2013.



Updates on Community Learning from BIS and EAEA

March 18, 2013 in Communtiy Safety, Education by Tony Wright

LSEN Community Learning Strategy Steering Group Members,

You may find the following information and updates on Community Learning useful

The EAEA (European Association for the Education of Adults) also have a new project looking at raising the awareness of Adult Education and at the end of this email there is a survey they would like as many organisations as possible to respond to – so please have a look at it



BIS – Funding for Community Learning – 2013 – 2014

To align with the Community Learning reform proposals in New Challenges, New Chances Further Education and Skills System Reform Plan: Building a World Class Skills System, the Skills Funding Agency will, with immediate effect, refer to the type of learning previously described as Adult Safeguarded Learning and Informal Adult Learning simply as Community Learning.

In order to align with this change of terminology, providers are also asked in future to refer to this type of learning as Community Learning. Please note there will be a period of transition for Agency systems to reflect this change.
Community Learning

Community Learning includes a range of community based and outreach learning opportunities, primarily managed and delivered by local authorities and General Further Education Colleges designed to bring together adults (often of different ages and backgrounds) by helping them to pursue an interest, address a need, acquire a new skill, become healthier or learn how better to support their children.

The Agency expects each provider to ensure they reach at least as many learners in 2012/13 as in 2011/12, and where possible exceed this number. The Community Learning budget for 2012/13 has been maintained at the same level as 2011/12. Learners should be recorded in the normal way on the Community Learning Individualised Learner Record (ILR) which should be returned in line with the Information Authority’s ILR returns timetable.

While providers are free to decide how they meet their commitments and how they respond to their local communities they must deliver a balance of provision across Community Learning

For further information and to download the key documents and presentations please visit


BIS Report on Community Learning Survey – why they did it and what impact it had on them

BIS have produced a report on a survey on why people take part in community learning and how they benefit from it. (BIS research paper number 108)

The report describes the findings of a survey of 4,000 people who have recently completed a community learning course in England. It looks at what learners feel about the learning they have done and how it has affected their lives. The survey covered:

peoples’ attitudes to learning
motivations to participate
specific things the course gave them
other questions on how the course has had an impact on other areas of learners’ lives, such as parenting skills, health and well being, looking for a job, taking part in more courses, volunteering and meeting different people
These findings are shown for different types of learners depending on where they live, their income, gender and ethnicity.

The report also includes a section dealing with how many learners pay for their courses and whether they feel they are value for money.

This report looks at how well the current system of community learning is delivering against government objectives. As this survey took place before the new community learning objectives were introduced in August 2012, it provides a baseline for measuring future progress as reforms take effect.

The community learning learner survey data tables are available separately.- findout more at – http://tinyurl.com/cvfr8qg

Awareness Raising for Adult Learning and Education
The EAEA (European Association for the Education of Adults) – www.eaea.org has launched its new project ARALE for “Awareness Raising for Adult Learning and Education”.
Its objective is to analyse common patterns between awareness raising activities organised by civil society and targeting several groups in order to identify successful good practices.
Please complete the survey here.
Walt Crowson
LSEN Coordinator
ECA Honorary Secretary

m. 07534 965 605 | e. walt.crowson@lsen.org.uk

CSV Volunteering Bulletin

February 28, 2013 in Communtiy Safety, Education by Tony Wright

Courses / Classes


*Courses at the Bideford Community Centre (Free)


CSV Learning North, in association with the Bideford Community Centre, are offering FREE training and qualifications to local unemployed people which will provide them with the opportunity to improve their skills in a variety of areas. We are currently running a Personal Progression Course, and courses in Photography, Moving Images, Community Leadership and Creative Writing.


The Bideford Community Centre is always looking for new volunteers too!


Address: Bideford Drive, Manchester M23 0QN


For more information, please contact CSV on 0161 998 0832 or 07585 706 134, or reply to this email.

Email: gtsakiri@csv.org.uk



*Dragon Martial Arts


We are please to announce that Southside House is now the new Dragon Martial Arts Training Centre HQ! Sessions take place on the following days:
Mondays – Thursdays – Saturdays
> 3-6 years old – 5-6pm
> 7-10 years old – 6-7pm
> 11 years old – Adults – 7.30-8.30pm

Family lessons take place Tuesday and Friday 6-7pm

Freestyle Boxercise (Teenagers and Adults):
Tuesday – Friday 7.30-8.30pm

Address: Southside House, 56 Altrincham Road, Wythenshawe, Manchester M22 4NY


For further information, please contact Alan Houghton.

M: 07731 848 531 / Email: ‎dma1995@me.com


*Seasons Writing Project (Free)


CSV Learning North is delighted to announce the arrival of our free spring writing workshop. The sessions are designed to help you improve your writing skills and enable you to have a journey in literature and start your own writing project.


Novels, poems, short stories and other writing genres will be presented, and we will look at great samples of writing. We will help you build up your writing skills, start your own writing project, materialise your ideas and publish your work.


Join us every Wednesday 2-4 pm from 20th of March at CSV Learning North.


Address: Southside house, 56 Altrincham Road, Wythenshawe M22 4NY


For more information and to reserve your place on the project, please contact the course leader, Mahboobeh Rajabi.

Email: rajabi.mahboobeh@gmail.com

Blog: seasonswritingproject.wordpress.com 




Volunteering Opportunities



*Newfound Planet Films (NPF)


NPF are currently in the  post production phase of their new feature film and a documentary. If you have some film-making and production experience, and would like to help out, please contact Gemma Bradley.

Email: gemma@nfpfilms.com



*The Youth Village Limited


The Youth Village Limited aims to develop culturally appropriate spaces for intergenerational learning for disadvantaged communities.The organisation is looking for volunteers, business development, partnership development and collaboration opportunities.


If you are interested in helping out, contact Tony Wright.

M: 07943 424 981 / Email: tonywrightmst@yahoo.co.uk



*The Hu-Man Gallery

The Hu-Gallery is an artistic and social initiative which deliberately strives to go beyond the usual boundaries and aims to provide a space for creative partnerships and to nurture trade.


The CiC works in collaboration with the Youth Village Limited. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact the co-Director, Simone Tripodi.

Email:  tripodi.simone@gmail.com

W: http://www.hu-man.org/





The RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) is the charity that saves lives at sea. They provide, on call, a 24-hour lifeboat search and rescue service and a seasonal lifeguard service. Please follow the link below to the Volunteer Zone on the RNLI website:







WRVS is one of the largest voluntary organisations and much of their work involves supporting older people. They provide practical solutions to the everyday problems of loneliness and isolation.

WRVS currently have the following volunteering roles available:

Administration Support Volunteer; Research and Development Volunteer; Volunteer Events Organiser; Volunteer Recruiter; Volunteer Speaker.

Training relevant to all roles will be provided by WRVS. These roles are available across the country.


Contact head office if you are interested in any of the above opportunities.

Phone: 0845 601 4670

Check out the website for further information: www.wrvw.org.uk


* New Dawn


CSV Learning North are pleased to announce that we will be collaborating with New Dawn, a humanitarian project centred round the issue of poverty and sustainability. New Dawn is a voluntary programme which enables refugees in Algeria to grow their own food and involves UK schools and communities.

We currently have the following voluntary posts available:

Volunteer Coordinator; Fundraiser; Web Design and Social Media; Customer Relations; Management; Researcher; Tele-Sales (to raise local sponsorship); Project Management; Community Outreach; Youth Leader; Events Manager; Horticultural Manager; Video/Stills Photographer; Professional Advisors; Legal Advisor; Financial Advisor; Administration Advisor; Education Advisor; Business Development Advisor; and Marketing / PR Advisor.


Please contact Martin Dewhurst if you are interested in getting involved with the project.

M: 07951 708171 / Email:‎ martin.dewhurst@me.com



Westcroft Community Project


Westcroft Community Project in Burnage is looking for people with specialist skills, such as giving talks / training / skill sharing in social groups / classes / work clubs. Your skill may be employment related, or a skill such as cooking / baking, card making, or arts and crafts. Westcroft will also be running a Social Media Workshop soom, details to be confirmed shortly.


Phone: 0161 448 8232 / Email: d.roege@southwayhousing.co.uk



* Riverside ECHG


Riverside ECHG works within the supported housing sector offering accommodation and a range of support services to people who are experiencing issues such as homelessness, alcohol and substance addiction, mental health and offending issues.


Phone: 0161 277 5510 / Fax: 0161 273 8074 / Email: Gregory.Harris@riverside.org.uk



* Open Athletics


Open Athletics is an organisation for the promotion and development of LGBT athletics in the broadest sense – including track and field, fell and trail running, and race walking. Skills sought: Reliability and enthusiasm. The placement does not require any specific skills as OA will be training marshals on time-keeping, production of results, registration and marshalling. However having interest in sport and experience in sports events can make the placement more rewarding. Volunteers need to be over 18 years old.


M: 07709 000 436 / Work: co-chairs@openathletics.org



* The Christie NHS Foundation Trust      


Job Title: Macmillan Community Project Officer

Volunteers from Central, North Manchester, Tameside and Glossop are required to deliver cancer awareness advice to individuals, community groups and/or at events. You will be visiting community groups/events in targeted areas to talk about the early signs and symptoms of breast, lung and bowel cancer.


M: 07887 452 548 / Email: Alice.munby@nhs.net



Thank you!


Kind regards,



Georgia Tsakiri

Project Worker Assistant
CSV Learning North
Southside House
56 Altrincham Road
Manchester M22 4NY


T: 0161 739 0022

M: 07436 159 509


Join our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CsvManchester

Ready to make a difference and share your skills? Join the Professionals!


CSV creates opportunities for people to play an active part in their community.

CSV is a registered charity no 291222 and a company limited by guarantee under no 1435877.

We all benefit from stable, cohesive communities that work together. With the toughest times seen for a generation, the challenges are becoming greater – more unemployed young people, a growing isolated elderly population, families under greater stress, and more children in care. Donate now and together we can continue to make a difference: http://www.csv.org.uk/support-us

CSV, 237 Pentonville Road, London, N1 9NJ

Find out more at www.csv.org.uk

Like CSV UK’ on Facebook: www.facebook.com/CSVUK

Follow @CSV_UK’ on Twitter: www.twitter.com/@CSV_UK

Employee Volunteering: Transforming Business, Transforming Communities

February 28, 2013 in Communtiy Safety, Education by Tony Wright

The Greater Manchester Employee Volunteer Leadership Group would like to invite you to a lunchtime event to find out more about the power of Employee Volunteering to transform both your business and the communities within which you operate. 

Launched last year, the group is made up of individuals from business, community groups and public sector all committed to developing employee volunteering in Greater Manchester. This event will showcase some of the most innovative and impactful examples of employee volunteering from across Manchester.


Why attend?


This event will help you identify new, creative volunteering opportunities and show you how to get the most out of volunteering for your business, your employees and your community.


Whether you already have an established volunteering programme or are looking to further develop and support your employees, this event will both inspire and provide practical contacts and support.


Research shows that over 171,000 residents from Greater Manchester plan to volunteer in 2013, however less than 5% are encouraged by their employers to volunteer


Volunteering provides employees with new skills, builds links to your local community, reduces absenteeism and increases satisfaction

Join us and find out how you can help make Manchester the UK Capital of Employee Volunteering. F


For more information and booking details visit:



Children England News and Publications

February 28, 2013 in Communtiy Safety, Education by Tony Wright

Free Safeguarding Training Events
Children England is running a variety of free training events on safeguarding, as part of its Safe Network activity. Developed in partnership with the NSPCC, Children England and Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT), they are designed to help voluntary and community organisations develop a deeper understating of safeguarding policy and share understanding of how organisations can work together to keep children and young people safe.

Risk, Reality and Reform: Delivering effective Safeguarding Together
7th March, Manchester

Safeguarding Our Futures, In Times of Austerity
26th March, Cambridge

Free Health Event
Children England is running a free workshop on Health Reforms as part of the DfE Overarching Strategic Partnership. This free workshop is an opportunity to review the changes around Health Reform, its implications for the voluntary and community sector and the commissioning of services for children, young people and families.

Express Your Health!
6th March, Taunton

Government News and Publications

Children and Families Bill
The Department for Education has published The Young Person’s Guide to the Children and Families Bill. The report provides a summary of the information young people need to know is in the Bill and explains what will change for children and families if the Bill gets agreed.

Youth Employment
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published new Labour Market Statistics, estimating the number of young people in the labour market from October to December 2012. Key statistical figures include:
3.71m 16 to 24 year olds were in employment Oct to Dec 2012, up 29,000 from July to Sept
2.56m 16 to 24 year olds were economically inactive (including those in full-time education), down 54,000 from July to September
974,000 16 to 24 year olds were unemployed Oct to Dec 2012, up 11,000 from July to Sept
The unemployment rate for 16 to 24 year olds was 20.8% for Oct to Dec 2012, virtually unchanged from July to September

Shared Parental Leave
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has launched a consultation on shared parental leave and has invited working families and businesses to submit their views on how the system for shared parental leave and pay will work. The government will be consulting on the following details:
Whether it would be beneficial to align the notice periods to inform employers of the intention to take paternity leave and pay
Eligibility criteria for shared parental leave
Notice to bring to an end maternity leave and maternity pay, or allowance, if accompanied by a notification of intention to access the shared parental system
Whether parents should have 1 year from the start of maternity leave or 1 year from the child’s birth date to use the shared parental leave and pay
How employment protections on the right to return to the same job, should work for shared parental leave
How notification to employers will work with the new ‘fostering for adoption’ arrangements

In addition, Acas has also announced a consultation on a draft Code of Practice for the right to request flexible working. The two consultations are open and will both close on 21st May

GCSE Attainment
In response to a parliamentary question, Minster for Education, Elizabeth Truss, released figures on the GCSE attainment of schools relative to their Ofsted rating and the number of pupils eligible for free school meals. Key figures include:
63.5% of pupils at “outstanding” schools got 5 or more C grades at GCSE (including English and Maths). This compares to 31.7% of pupils who attained this level in “inadequate schools”
51.2% of pupils in schools rated “good” by Ofsted and 43% of pupils in schools rated “satisfactory” gained 5 A*-C GCSEs
In 2011, 38.9% of Free School Meal (FSM) pupils who attended “outstanding” schools scored 5 GCSEs at grade C or higher, excluding equivalents. This figures compares to 14.3% who reached this standard at schools rated “inadequate”
In 2011, in schools rated “good”, 27.8% of FSM pupils got five or more A* to C grades, with 23.9% achieving this level in “satisfactory” schools

Education, Training and Employment
The Department for Education has published revised statistics for the participation of 16- 18 year olds in education, training and employment for the year ending 2011. Key breakdowns include age, gender, and mode of study, type of learning, institution type, labour market status and highest qualification being studied.

Commissioning Masterclasses
The Cabinet Office has announced the Masterclasses workshops to help VCS organisations bid, win and deliver public service contracts are open for registration. The Masterclasses have been developed by the government, in collaboration with private and third sector partners, and will use case studies, practical tools and the direct experience of experts to help guide organisations in winning and delivering public service contracts. Key skills the Masterclasses aim to develop include:
writing winning bids
adjusting to changes in the tender process
developing consortia
financial skills, such as how to profile and manage risks

Social Innovation Fund
The Cabinet Office has announced five innovative programmes focused on getting volunteers involved in solving huge social challenges will receive follow-on funding from the Innovation in Giving Fund. The Fund is run by Nesta and funded by the Cabinet Office. The five programmes to receive funding are Care4Care, GoodGym, Apps for Good and Inspiring the Future.

Centre for Social Action
The Cabinet Office has announced plans to launch as new Centre for Social Action in April 2013. Over two years this project will invest £36m to support organisations who want to mobilise people to take part in social action. Recent investments have included Join In and the Dementia Friends Campaign

Work Programme
The Public Accounts Committee has published a report examining the performance of the Work Programme, based on evidence from the Department of Work and Pensions. Key findings from the report include:
Only 3.6% of people referred to the Work Programme moved off benefit and into work between June 2011 and July 2012, less than a third of the target of 11.9%
None of the 18 providers managed to meet their minimum performance target
There is substantial variation in the performance of individual providers. The best performing provider moved 5% of people off benefit and into sustained employment, the lowest performing managed only 2.2%
Of 9,500 former incapacity benefit claimants referred to providers, only 20 have been placed in a job that has lasted three months
The poorest performing provider did not manage to place a single person in the under 25 category into a job lasting six months

School Monitoring Visits
The Department for Education has published guidance explaining how local authorities should carry out monitoring visits to schools administering Key Stage 2 tests.

Sector News and Publications

Child Poverty Map
End Child Poverty has published a new End Child Poverty Report. The report includes a Child Poverty Map, providing details of poverty rates across local authority areas and parliamentary constituencies.

Food Poverty
The Children’s Food Trust has published the results of a survey into views on food poverty from professionals working with children. The online survey collected views from 253 professionals – ranging from youth workers, childminders and teachers to family intervention workers and doctors – between November 2012 and February 2013. Key figures from the survey include:
85% of professionals surveyed didn’t believe the children were getting enough to eat. A further 33% reported that this was an everyday occurrence
64% said they thought hunger was affecting the health of children they work with, 77% said they believed it was impacting children’s ability to concentrate and learn. A further 76% said they believed children they worked with would be doing better at school if they were getting more to eat
42% of professionals working in schools reported to have given a child food in the last two years because they were worried they weren’t getting enough to eat. 24% had given a child money to buy food and 89% had sent a child to the school kitchen to get food
47% of professionals who worked in schools felt there had been an increase in the amount of junk food children carried in their lunchboxes, as well as a fall in the amount and quality of food

Visually Impaired Children
The Royal London Society for the Blind (RLSB), in partnership with RNIB, has published the results of an analysis of the differing experiences of visually impaired children compared to children, without sight loss. The study analysed data in the Millennium Cohort Survey of 19,000 children born in 2000, specifically focusing on 14,000 children aged seven (357 with sight impairment and 13,500 without), their parents and their teachers. Key findings from the report include:
11% of children with sight impairment and another impairment said they felt worried all of the time compared with 5% with no sight impairment.
34% of parents of children with sight impairment and another impairment said it was ‘somewhat’ or ‘certainly’ true that their child ‘has many worries or often seems worried’ compared to 22% of parents of children with a sight impairment only or no sight impairment
Children with sight and other impairment were more likely than children without sight impairment to have a total household income less than £300 per week: 52% compared with 35% For children with sight impairment only the proportion was 47%
21% children with sight impairment lived in households who were behind on bills, compared to 13% with no sight impairment
35% of children with sight impairment (with or without an additional impairment) lived in households that were 60% below the median poverty indicator, compared to 23% of children with no sight impairment

Other News and Publications

Energy Bill Revolution
The Energy Bill Revolution, of which Children England is a member, has published a briefing on families and fuel poverty. The campaign has also produced a video, Fuel Poverty: the Impact of Cold Homes on Children. Key findings from the report include:
1.6 million UK children living in fuel poverty
130,000 more children in fuel poverty since 2010
Number of English children in fuel poverty now at 1.2 million
If energy bills rise by 25% the number of children in fuel poverty
In the UK will double from 1.6 million to 3.2 million
A nationwide programme of insulation funded by carbon tax could eradicate fuel poverty and cut annual energy bills for the fuel poor by over £300 every year on average

Dates for the Diary

Training and Events
To find out about Children England’s current training and events please click here. To subscribe to our Training & Events E-Newsletter, please click here.

Consultations and Inquiries
(new consultations and inquiries are marked in bold):

Closing 28 February 2013
Department for Education: Consultation on changes to the delegation and inspection of functions for looked after children and care leavers

Closing Date 6 March 2013
Equality and Human Rights Commission: Independent review of the Disability Committee

Closing 12 March 2013
Ofsted: Arrangements for the inspection of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service – A consultation

Closing 14 March 2013
Sentencing Council: Consultation on new guideline for sentencing sexual offences

Closing 19 March 2013
Ofsted: A good education for all – Consultation on inspection of local authority services

Closing 25 March 2013
Department for Education: Early education and childcare staff deployment

Closing 26 March
Education Select Committee: written submissions for inquiry into school sports following London 2012

Closing 30 April
Ministry of Justice: Transforming youth custody – Putting education at the heart of detention (HTML format)

Closing 11 April 2013
BIS: Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations (TUPE) 2006 – Consultation on proposed changes

Closing 16 April 2013
Department for Education: Consultation on reform of the National Curriculum in England

Closing 19 April 2013
HM Treasury: Consultation on Payroll Giving

*Closing 22 April 2013*
Department for Education: Consultation on the criteria for Early Years educator qualifications (Level 3)

*Closing 24 April 2013*
Department of Work and Pensions consultation: Statistics on people and households claiming Universal Credit, Personal Independence Payment and other benefits – Plans for 2013-2017

Children England

February 8, 2013 in Education by Tony Wright

Children England invite you to this highly interactive, 1-day workshop providing practical insights into the core skills and behaviours needed to be effective in the role of a leader within your organisation.

Effective Leadership

Thurs, 28 February 2013, 10:30 – 16:30

The Gateway Centre (Liverpool)

Exploring practical models of leadership and their application, you’ll gain knowledge and understanding of what makes an effective and inspirational leader – designed specifically for charities, community groups and social enterprises working with children, young people and families.

Key topics covered:

  • leading and managing – what’s the difference?
  • leadership behaviours, qualities and strengths
  • influencing others
  • creating high performance teams
  • child-centred leadership
  • leadership for effective joint working

A 2-course lunch is included in your workshop fees

Course fees from £125 / Bursary places available


Email us and we’ll send a booking form in Word format.

As you’ve previously attended a Children England event and opted to receive information on future courses and events, we’ll keep you posted on forthcoming opportunities. Many of our events are free to attend when funded and we also operate a bursary scheme for members and non-members

To find out about other forthcoming events, sign up to our monthly Training & Events E-newsletter for free. Click here
You can also visit our ‘what’s on’ calendar - click here

WEA Membership

February 8, 2013 in Education by Tony Wright



WEA Membership – if you are not a member but would like to be please click here to become a member, it is free.   If you would like to be removed from our mailing list please reply to this mail and include the works ‘remove from mailing list’ in the title bar.


Interested in archiving the WEA history we are looking at  the possibility  of setting up a team of volunteers to archive and digitise materials in the WEA  archive.   If tis is of interest  to you  will you  please contact us.


We have set up a blog to allow us to tell you more about our  events for members and volunteers and to invite you  to comment on our events and the ideas behind them.  Please take a look athttp://weawhatsthepointof.blogspot.co.uk/


Volunteer contact information.   If you have registered as a volunteer  with the WEA you  are likely  to be contacted in the next  few weeks to have your information verified.   This is simply for the purposes of our records.


Can you  help?


Our What’s the point of events are generating considerable interest  from people who can’t attend but  would like to view a webinar of the event and take part  via twitter and comments etc….   This just  about stretches us to the ends of our technical competence.   Is there a volunteer out there with the knowledge and skills to help us?   Pleasecontact me if there is.

Free Events for Members and Volunteers


1.           Feb 27th,  6 till 8. Venue  Abram Room, Blackburn central Library  What’s the point of the European Union?   Delivered by Michael Hindley who was Leader of Hyndburn District Council has served on Lancashire County Council, did 3 terms as a Member of the European Parliament, observed elections around the world and acted as a political consultant for the European Community Commission, the Council of Europe, the UN and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation.   At the time of writing Michael is also a member of the WEAs regional committee.  To book please visit www.wtpoeu.eventbrite.co.uk   see more about this event here


  1. March 1st Film Club in Manchester, first meeting to be held in WEA offices at 11am – The first  meeting went really well and recruited 18  people.    The film club is now full but  please contact Helen if you would like to attend, she will be keeping a waiting list  and if she gets a good number  of ‘extras’ we will look for a volunteer  to set up a second group.   Helen can be contacted on helenkerr173@gmail.com
  2. March 6th  6 -  8  pm    What’s the Point of Newspapers? -   Would The Sun be able to write their infamous Hillsborough headline in an era of Twitter, Facebook, instant  digital photos and blogs?   A discussion group looking at the changing role of newspapers 20 years ago and today.   This discussion group is being led by WEA volunteer Nev Bann who prior to retirement taught sociology in environments ranging from prison to community colleges, has extensive experience of union activity, served as a city councillor and stood for parliament.   You  can read and comment on an introductory  blog  on this event  here.   The event is held at the WEA offices at the Cotton Exchange in Liverpool.  To book visit www.wtponewspapers.eventbrite.co.uk
  3. March  6th 2013,  5.30 – 7.30 at  City  South Manchester Housing Trust, Archway 5, Hulme,  Manchester, M15 5RL What’s the point of Social Housing?  Led by David Dennehy WEA member and volunteer.    David is also a tenant director of a social housing trust.   Read and comment on an introductory blog here.  To book visitwww.wtposocialhousingwea.eventbrite.com
  4. March 21 2013, 5 -  6.30  pm at WEA Manchester  Office, M13 9GH.  Fascinated by TED Talks? A learning circle for people who are stimulated by  the ‘ideas worth  sharing’ featured on this fascinating web site   come along to either  listen to others commenting on their chosen videos and join the discussion or come armed to share your favourites.   The idea is to stimulate discussion and further learning – hopefully we will feel motivated to continue to meet.   Book atwww.weatedtalksman.eventbrite.co.uk
  5. April 10th 5.30 till 7.30.   Venue Abram Room, Blackburn central Library What’s the point of the Fair Trade?  Delivered by Michael Hindley who was Leader of Hyndburn District Council has served  on Lancashire County  Council,  did 3 terms as a Member  of the European Parliament, observed elections around the world and acted as a political consultant for the European Community  Commission, the Council of Europe,  the UN and the Organisation for Security  and Cooperation.   At the time of writing Michael is also a member of the WEAs regional committee.  To book please visitwww.wtpofairtrade.eventbrite.co.uk
    1. April 16 2013, 6 -  7.30  pm at WEA Liverpool Office, L3 9JR.  Fascinated by TED Talks? A learning circle for people who are stimulated by  the ‘ideas worth  sharing’ featured on this fascinating web site come along to either  listen to others commenting on their chosen videos and join the discussion or come armed to share your favourites.   The idea is to stimulate discussion and further learning – hopefully we will feel motivated to continue to meet. Book atwww.weatedtalkslpool.eventbrite.co.uk
  6. May 2nd 5.30 till 7.30.   Venue  Merseyside TBC   What’s the point of the Fair Trade?   Delivered by Michael Hindley who was Leader of Hyndburn District Council has served  on Lancashire County  Council,  did 3 terms as a Member  of the European Parliament, observed elections around the world and acted as a political consultant for the European Community  Commission, the Council of Europe,  the UN and the Organisation for Security  and Cooperation.   At the time of writing Michael is also a member of the WEAs regional committee.  To book please visit
  7. May 15th  10 – 12.30  Volunteer  Induction and Recruitment Event -  This event will provide potential new volunteers with information about the organisation and support  and networking for existing volunteers.   The event is held at Newton Family  and Community Centre.   Contact Phill O’Brien to find out more or visit www.volinduction.eventbrite.co.uk to book your place.



WEA Branch  Events

Where no contactdetails are specified please call WEA office to book 0151 243 5340



Starting 18 February 2013    Novels: Only Connect (Literature) (C3834201)   This course for enthusiastic readers studies novels concentrating, although not exclusively, on recently published ones.  Continuing our exploration of literary influences, we will begin with a re-evaluation of Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca. Other novels include Graham Greene’s The Human Factor and John Banville’s The Untouchable.

10 meetings, Mondays, 2.00pm – 4.00pm,   held at Ring O’ Bells Quaker Meeting House, Ring O’ Bells Lane Disley SK12 2AG,    Total Fees: £62 or free*


Saturday 16 February 2013, 11.00am – 3.00pm,  Saturday Day Schools in Disley   Music, Romance and Reality   Music has the ability to evoke a wide range of moods and atmosphere. We shall experience the many contrasts arising from this, exploring first the subjective and emotional qualities of music in the ‘Romantic’ period (1830-1914). We shall then examine the 20th Century reactions away from this, including some of the links with earlier styles, e.g. baroque/classical. This is a course for all music lovers wishing to broaden their horizons and experience.    Held at Ring O’ Bells Quaker Meeting House, Ring O’ Bells Lane, Disley SK12 2AG    ,    Fee: £10.00 including lunch, tea and coffee Pre-paid booking is essential please send a cheque payable to ‘WEA Disley’, together with a SAE for receipt/ticket, to Pat Orchard, 60 Meadway, Poynton, Stockport SK12 1DZ.




Saturday 23 March 2013, 11.00am – 3.00pm, Saturday Day Schools in Disley    Richard III   Does this much-maligned monarch deserve his reputation as a child murderer? This case study explores one of the most infamous monarchs in British history and his alleged involvement in the murder of the princes in the Tower.   Held at Ring O’ Bells Quaker Meeting House, Ring O’ Bells Lane, Disley SK12 2AG.    Fee: £10.00 including lunch, tea and coffee .   Booking essential please send a cheque payable to ‘WEA Disley’, together with a SAE for receipt/ticket, to Pat Orchard, 60 Meadway, Poynton, Stockport SK12 1DZ.


Starting 25 March 2013   Birdwatching Walks (C3834213)  A series of birdwatching walks to discover local sites, as well as areas slightly further afield, that will enable you to learn and widen your knowledge of birdwatching.  First  meeting starts at  Castle Methodist Church School Room, Beeston Street, Castle, Northwich CW8 1ER, 5 meetings, Mondays, 10.00am – 12.00noon, Total Fees: £31 or free*




Starting 4 April 2013,   Birdwatching Walks (C3834202)   A series of birdwatching walks to discover local sites, as well as areas slightly further afield, that will enable you to learn and widen your knowledge of birdwatching. First  meeting starts at  Ring O’ Bells Quaker Meeting House, Ring O’ Bells Lane Disley SK12 2AG, 5 meetings, Thursdays, 10.00am – 12.00noon,Total Fees: £31 or free*



Mondays 15 April, 20 May and 1 July 2013    Nature Walk    Meet at Marbury Park Rangers’ Office at 10.00am (walk lasts approximately two hours),    A chance to see flowers, insects, birds and mammals, and visit areas of Anderton and Marbury not normally open to the public. The WEA Northwich Branch is pleased to be associated with these walks and please note there is no charge to attend.    Contact Bob Percival on 01928 788 077 if any queries.



Got  an idea for a volunteer / membership event?   Do you  know a cultural venue who might be interested in hosting a WEA membership and volunteers event then get  in touch and let me know

Phill O’Brien

Volunteer and Membership Development Worker






If you have received this email in error, please forward the original correspondence to national@wea.org.uk so we may rectify the error. If you do not forward the original correspondence we may not be able to identify from which department the email originated.

We may monitor and record all emails for quality control and training purposes.

The Workers’ Educational Association is a charity registered in England and Wales (number 1112775) and in Scotland (number SC039239).
The Workers’ Educational Association is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (Company Number 2806910).

Our Registered Office address is 4 Luke Street, LONDON, EC2A 4XW.
Our website is www.wea.org.uk




If you have received this email in error, please forward the original correspondence to national@wea.org.uk so we may rectify the error. If you do not forward the original correspondence we may not be able to identify from which department the email originated.

We may monitor and record all emails for quality control and training purposes.

The Workers’ Educational Association is a charity registered in England and Wales (number 1112775) and in Scotland (number SC039239).
The Workers’ Educational Association is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (Company Number 2806910).

Our Registered Office address is 4 Luke Street, LONDON, EC2A 4XW.
Our website is www.wea.org.uk




If you have received this email in error, please forward the original correspondence to national@wea.org.uk so we may rectify the error. If you do not forward the original correspondence we may not be able to identify from which department the email originated.

We may monitor and record all emails for quality control and training purposes.

The Workers’ Educational Association is a charity registered in England and Wales (number 1112775) and in Scotland (number SC039239).
The Workers’ Educational Association is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (Company Number 2806910).

Our Registered Office address is 4 Luke Street, LONDON, EC2A 4XW.
Our website is www.wea.org.uk