Its #DemocracyDay We call on all parties to support #learning4democracy and inclusive politics. Please RT now.

Its #DemocracyDay We call on all parties to support #learning4democracy and inclusive politics. Please RT now.

Do something for democracy

Do something for democracy

big_fish_little_fishCan you spare a few minutes to be part of a co-ordinated social media campaign to promote practical political education on the International Day of Democracy on 15 September?

The Democracy Matters alliance is organising some simple and quick action to promote inclusive politics and learning for citizenship, democracy and justice. This builds well on a lively event in Leedslast June and means that…

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New chapters for adult literacy

New chapters for adult literacy

Being able to read fluently is much more than a ‘functional’ skill, essential as it is for employability, health, democracy and everyday life.

As avid readers ourselves, Ruth Spellman and I really enjoyed getting together with Cathy Rentzenbrink ‎and Jo Dawson of Quick Readsthis week. We met to explore how WEA students could benefit from their short books. Big name authors have written them and…

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Adult Education, Citizenship, Democracy and Justice

Adult Education, Citizenship, Democracy and Justice


There was a lively buzz at a get together in Leeds this week that focused on adult education and an agenda for citizenship, democracy and justice. People in the room and beyond, via social media, are excited about the traditions and promise of adult education for social purpose. It was good to see people of different ages and backgrounds exchanging experiences and ideas in a refreshing day of…

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Adult Learners’ Week - celebration and challenge

Adult Learners’ Week – celebration and challenge

Adult Learners’ Week this year has seemed even more intense and vibrant than usual, with an almost overwhelming range of activities, stories and examples of personal success. People have gathered to celebrate adults’ educational achievements at local, regional and national award ceremonies. Award winners and nominees have told their amazing stories. Their families, friends and supporters have…

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Inclusion, sport and a manifesto for adult education

Inclusion, sport and a manifesto for adult education

Award-winning sportspeople have had a big impact in the WEA this week.

One of Great Britain’s most successful Paralympians, Tanni Grey-Thompson, gave the WEA’s Annual Lecture on 11 June at Birkbeck University. She seemed disarmingly easy-going as she packed several powerful political points into her speech, talking with unpretentious warmth and wit.


Tanni Grey-Thompson, DBE, DL (Photo by…

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PIAAC and Trojan Horses

PIAAC and Trojan Horses

The political fallout of the alleged “Trojan Horse” controversy in Birmingham has replaced the results of the European elections in the news headlines. Extremism, mistrust and intolerance are increasingly common threads in reported news.

Meanwhile, few people are commenting on findings from the OECD’s recent PIAACReport that relate to adult learning and its effects on tolerance, citizenship and…

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Women overcoming disadvantage through education

Women overcoming disadvantage through education

We are launching our “WEA Women overcoming disadvantage through education” campaign with a conference in Nottingham this Wednesday, 4 June. It’s at the ICCA, Hucknall Road, Nottingham, NG5 1QZ, with registration at 10.00 am for a 10.30 start and a 4.00 pm finish.


As well as our own General Secretary and CEO, Ruth Spellman and WEA colleagues, speakers will include:

  • Dr Finn Mackay, feminist…

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Low pay in employment

Low pay in employment

Better paid and educated workers are better for the economy and inequality comes with many costs.

Five million UK workers are employed in low-paid jobs and the largest group feeling poverty is made up of families with at least one adult in paid work. Official figures miss out the most exploited workers, who include immigrants, young people and women, working illegally in the ‘underground’ economy.

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