Keep Wales Safe this Winter
We all need to help stop the spread of Coronavirus in Wales.
Effect of Covid-19 on learners
The coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has affected life everywhere. Welsh Government researchers would like to understand more about the impact the pandemic has had on learners in Wales. For this reason, this survey is aimed at you if you are a current learner aged 16 or older, undertaking your learning at AS and A levels in a school sixth form, further education or work-based or adult learning in college or in the community.
To complete the survey please visit the following SmartSurvey.
The survey asks about your ways of learning during the pandemic, your wellbeing and safety as well as your learning choices. We want to hear from you how the lockdown, which started at the end of March 2020, and the subsequent restrictions have affected your learning, and how your learning is going now.
The survey should take around 15 minutes to complete. Most questions ask for your opinion on statements, but there is a space for comments at the end. We will use your responses to help the Welsh Government make decisions about education.
For further information, please email us at Employability and Skills Research. Thank you in advance for your help.
The Smith Family – Family Learning Award Winner
Nominated by: Dysgu Bro Ceredigion
Alex said, “We wanted to start learning BSL as a family so that Krsna would have a full language in which to communicate. We take it for granted, but without a full language it’s much more difficult for us to express emotions and develop relationships.”
Krsna’s parents, Karuna and her husband Prana Smith, wanted Krsna to be immersed in Deaf culture from an early age. They started learning BSL when he was a baby and quickly arranged for him to spend time with other Deaf people. “No child can become fluent in a language unless they can experience it being used fluently around them. It was really important to us to be able to communicate with him fully, include him in family conversations and help to support him in his BSL.”
They started by teaching themselves BSL at home using books and online resources. When subsidised entry-level classes were set up locally as part of the Dysgu Bro programme, they signed up right away. Grandmother, Alex, continued: “Learning BSL can be very expensive so we feel incredibly grateful for this opportunity. If there was more funding available, more families would be able to support Deaf family members by learning BSL.
Since completing the course, Krsna’s uncle Josey, has used his BSL skills to volunteer, he said: “I was initially nervous to start the course, but my confidence has improved massively and now I’m determined to keep going and complete my Level 3 qualification.”
Krsna’s aunties, Naomi and Laura, have worked to involve Deaf people in festivals they organise. They said: “Deaf people are hugely disadvantaged within the hearing community. We think everyone should learn BSL; learning a language as an adult is challenging but I would recommend it to anyone.
Alex, who worked as a tutor, said, “Any kind of learning expands you and helps to make you a more rounded person. I now understand the pressures of fitting learning and assessments around family life much better than I did before. We’ve made some great friendships with the other people we learned with, but most importantly we’re able to communicate with Krsna.”
Learning and Work Institute Inspire! Tutor Awards 2019
Alison Bryan and Alison Newby of Dysgu Bro were nominated for the Learning and Work Institute Inspire! Tutor Awards recently and, as runners-up, both received awards. Congratulations to both Alisons on their success.
The Learning and Work Institute Inspire! Tutor Awards, in partnership with Welsh Government, celebrate the achievements of exceptional tutors and mentors in Wales. Those tutors and mentors who have shown outstanding passion and commitment to encourage, support and teach other adult learners to pursue their goals and transform their lives, whether it’s in their community or the workplace.
Behind every successful adult learner there is an inspirational mentor or tutor and all the nominations reflect the work of adult learning in all areas of our lives. Adult learning is often where people turn in response to a life crisis, sometimes driven by a desire to be a better parent, they may have a need to build skills to get into employment or change career. Each of the award winners demonstrated an ability to inspire confidence and a love of learning.
Alison Bryan is with presenter of the evening, Nia Parry, S4C presenter and with Jeff Greenidge, Chair at the Learning and Work Institute.
A day in my life by John A.Hughes – Tutor, Dysgu Bro Ceredigion
I studied Photography, Graphics and Video at Yale College in Wrexham before going on to complete a degree in Electronic Graphics at Staffordshire University, followed by a P.G.C.E.
I taught for a while at Yale College before making the big step to go travelling. One place in particular I wanted to visit was Russia and I ended up working and living there for over five years.
Since 2011, I’ve been a tutor at Dysgu Bro Ceredigion. Dysgu Bro is Ceredigion County Council’s Adult Community Learning provider. It aims to provide learning opportunities for people across the communities of Ceredigion to develop new interests, work towards gaining a qualification or improve their skills for their work.
We deliver courses at community venues, workplaces or at one of our venues; Aberaeron, Canolfan Rheidol, HCT Llanbadarn, Llandysul Dysgu Bro Centre or Cardigan Dysgu Bro Centre.
I teach a variety of Digital Skills from Web Design, Adobe Photoshop, Social Media to Microsoft Office (Word, Excel etc).
Most of my classes are held at Canolfan Rheidol during the day and at HCT in Llanbadarn in the evenings. I enjoy delivering a variety of subjects however it’s the creative courses I enjoy the most, from Typography to digital photography. I teach a variety of learners from all different ages and backgrounds from 14 to 95 years of age.
I also teach out in the local community including Cletwr community cafe near Talybont and Theatr Felinfach.
I also teach staff in the Council as well as delivering to businesses such as The Red Cross, FUW, Arad Goch. So, if you’re looking to train your staff at a local location at a reasonable price, consider Dysgu Bro Ceredigion.
I have one great group that have been meeting up for seven years now, every Tuesday morning. They show continuing enthusiasm in wanting to develop their digital skills.
At Dysgu Bro we deliver many courses and qualifications in a variety of subjects from European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) to First Aid, from iPads to even an introduction to Crime Scene Forensic Science! Courses are held during the day and evenings. In January we began some new courses including Yoga, Screen printing and Glass Painting. So, if you’re looking to learn something new in 2019, contact Dysgu Bro Ceredigion.
Or why not pop along to our open evening on 6 March at HCT Llanbadarn between 3pm and 7pm to find out more about what we can offer? We will be offering a variety of evening short courses the week beginning 11 March so this will be an ideal time to come and find out more.
Ceredigion Inspire! Awards celebrate lifelong learning
At the end of Adult Learners’ Week, Ceredigion Adult Learning Partnership held their Inspire! Awards where eight awards were presented. The adult learners from across Ceredigion, who have overcome challenges and barriers, were recognised for their achievements.
Haf Shannon Burrill, Max Jenkins, Morgan Owen, Jennifer Lewis, Siani McDowell, Jessica Harvey, Najlaa Jamal, Bashar Mardenli, Latifa Al Najarr, Rakan Al Najarr and Ahmad Sultan were all presented with major awards for learning as part of a prestigious award ceremony held on 22nd June 2018 at the Arts Hall, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Lampeter.
In addition to the learner awards, Alison Bryan of Dysgu Bro was awarded with the Tutor of the Year Award.
Councillor Catherine Hughes, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Community Learning said, “The Ceredigion Inspire! Awards celebrate the achievements of outstanding adult learners in Ceredigion who have shown exceptional passion, commitment and drive for learning, often in the face of difficult circumstances. We’re very proud of them all and look forward to hearing of their future developments.”
Adult Learners’ Week is organised by the Learning and Work Institute with the support of the Welsh Government and ran from 25th June to 1st July. It celebrates lifelong learning, whether work-based, as part of a community education course, at college, university or online. Now in its 25th year, it aims to promote the range of courses available to adult learners, from languages to computing and childcare to finance.
Corporate Lead Officer for Lifelong Learning and Culture, Elen James said, “It was a pleasure to attend the Ceredigion Inspire Learner Awards evening in Lampeter and to observe these adults receiving various awards and accreditations. The Adult Learning Partnership provision is hugely valuable to adults in Ceredigion as it offers a wide range of opportunities and training to the citizens of Ceredigion. The number of achievements this year is a reflection of our learners’ committment and enthusiasm and it was a pleasure to welcome so many learners and their families to celebrate with us this year. Congratulations to you all!”
The winners were:
- Haf Shannon Burrill – Young Adult Award. Haf has shown commitment to her learning. She is in her final year of her Level 2 Plumbing apprenticeship at Hyfforddiant Ceredigion Training
- Najlaa Jamal, Bashar Mardenli, Latifa Al Najarr, Rakan Al Najarr, Ahmad Sultan – Different Past: Shared Futures Award. This group of learners have shown great progression in developing their digital literacy and language skills
- Max Jenkins – Ageing Well. Max has been attending computer classes at Dysgu Bro Ceredigion for a number of years and always interested in gaining more knowledge
- Jennifer Lewis – Life Change and Progression Award. During her time learning British Sign Language at Dysgu Bro Ceredigion, Jennifer also had caring responsibilities. Despite having to juggle hospital appointments and care commitments at home, she committed herself to learning. She said that learning has helped her and she recognised the value and benefit of learning
- Siani McDowell – Award for Health and Wellbeing. Siani has made every effort to access all the support available in order to make a success of this year at Coleg Ceredigion, and it has paid off
- Jessica Harvey – Welsh Learner. Jessica has been working very hard to improve her Welsh language skills by conversing more through the medium of Welsh during class activities at Coleg Ceredigion and whilst on placement. She has also gone through to Medal y Dysgwyr competition with the Urdd, reaching the final 4 candidates
- Morgan Owen – ‘Into Work’ award. Morgan studied on the Traineeship Engagement Programme at Hyfforddiant Ceredigion Training and has since gone on to do a placement in a local Motor sport store
- Alison Bryan – Tutor of the year. Alison has been described as inspirational, enthusiastic, supportive, caring, encouraging and fun. She uses a wide range of engaging and dynamic teaching methods at Dysgu Bro Ceredigion to ensure that everyone’s learning needs are met. She gives additional support to learners outside of the classroom in her own time, organising socials with other BSL learners and users. She travels great distances to deliver BSL classes across several counties. She’s dedicated and passionate in her endeavours to raise awareness of the issues affecting deaf people
For more information about Community Learning, contact Dysgu Bro on 01970 633540 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Staff inspired by award winning course
Ceredigion County Council has been named the winner of the Large Employer Award 2017.
On Thursday, 15th June 2017, the Council was presented with the Large Employer Award for its commitment to developing employees’ digital literacy, and was named the best large employer in Wales at this year’s Inspire! Awards.
Dysgu Bro Ceredigion, Ceredigion County Council’s Adult Community Learning provider, have worked closely with Trade Union UNISON’s DigiSkills Wales, Union Learning Fund Project, to enable over 100 members of staff to develop their basic digital skills, during the last year.
Denise Owen, Community Education Manager at Dysgu Bro, said, “I think the success of the project was getting workers involved from the start to design the course and having Managers on board who saw the need for staff to be computer literate. So far, 118 people have taken the course. Now, the TUC has given us a quality mark so our plan is to train more Council staff and possibly roll it out to other workplaces.”
Elen James, Ceredigion County Council’s Head of Youth Engagement and Continuing Education said, “We’re pleased that Managers have been able to release staff, mainly those working off site in care homes and at the waste management depots to attend the courses during work time. Our role was to provide the facilities and the tutors to deliver the sessions. Digiskills Champions were created and were instrumental in rolling out the training. It is an example of how partnerships within the workplace can deliver learning opportunities to other sectors that can be hard to reach.”
Whilst working together, the digital skill needs of colleagues were identified and a range of initiatives were co-designed, aimed at building the skills and confidence of the workforce. The result was five sessions of short, flexible workshops. The sessions were designed to address the skills needed for work and home life. A session on online forms helped staff use the Council’s online Human Resources system.
Councillor Catrin Miles, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Learning Services, said “It was a delight to be at the awards ceremony to support the staff who have worked hard on developing digital literacy.”
The Inspire! Adult Learning Awards is the centre-piece of Adult Learners’ Week and an opportunity for the sector to celebrate the achievements of learners and organisations.