This is a crucial time for the adult learning sector in Scotland. Five years on from the publication of the Adult Learning in Scotland: Statement of Ambition, the Scottish Government has committed to the development of an Adult Learning Strategy in this year's Programme for Government. The 2014 statement set a vision for adult learning, where 'everyone in Scotland has the right to access high quality learning to meet their needs and aspirations – throughout their lives'.
Five years on from this statement of intent, does every person in Scotland have access to lifelong, life-wide, learner-centred education? How has the adult learning landscape changed in Scotland over the past five years? What new challenges will the Adult Learning Strategy need to address? The strategy will be developed in the context of a changing job market and demand for new skills, the need for councils to find additional finances to continue to provide learner-centred resources, and it will need to address the respective roles played by third sector organisations, universities, and colleges in the provision of lifelong learning.
Join us on 31 March as we examine the priorities for the new Adult Learning Strategy and look at examples of good practice in community, lifelong, and adult learning in Scotland.
09:30 Registration and Refreshments
09:55 Welcome and Introduction from the Chair.
Poppy Gerrard-Abbott, Researcher in Sociology, University of Edinburgh
Session 1: Assessing the Needs and Challenges of the Learning Community
- Opportunities to learn new employability skills for those impacted by changes to pension entitlement and redundancy
- The need for informal, structured, and/or certificated pathways
- Providing a range of learning opportunities with good quality advice, guidance, and support in place
10:00 Sarah Galloway, Lecturer in Further Education, University of Stirling
10:30 Becoming FutureFit Report on Adult Learning
Georgie Whiteley, Senior Researcher, NESTA
10:50 Jackie Howie, Lead Officer, Learning Link Scotland
11:10 Questions and Discussion
11:25 Refreshments and Networking
Session 2: Good Practice – Stories of Success in Widening Access and Responding to Changing Demands
- Inter-generational learning
- Supporting parents to gain new skills through learning and training
- Overcoming barriers, including experiences of past learning
11:40 Case Study 1 – Life Skills
12:00 Case Study 2 – Reskilling and Upskilling
Senior Policy Officer, Adult Learning, City of Edinburgh Council
12:20 Questions and Discussion
12:30 Interactive Discussion
Delegates will be divided into small groups to discuss what can be learned from these examples of good practice for their own work and organisations. Discussions will be lead by a question set to each table. This will be an opportunity to also consider what these case studies tell us about what should be included in the Adult Learning Strategy.
13:15 Lunch and Networking
Session 3: Next Steps for the Adult Learning Strategy and Building a Learning Society
- Embedding a culture of learning and building a 'learning society'
- Encouraging learners to value themselves and become valued in their communities
- How the Strategy can support learning providers, guiding collaboration and co-production
14:00 Panel Discussion
Dr Jim Crowther, Honorary Fellow, University of Edinburgh and editor of the international journal, Studies in the Education of Adults
Adam Lang, Director, Nesta Scotland
14:50 Closing remarks from the Chair
15:00 Close of Event
Please note the agenda is subject to change