Adult Learners Week
Adult Learners Week takes place from Saturday 18 - Friday 24 May 2013. It is a week long celebration of Adult Learner with a wide range of workshops, courses and events being run across the country for adult learners. New Directions is providing a wide selection of free taster courses in languages, arts, crafts and more! If you would to find out more about Adult Learners Week then visit the website at Adult Learners Week Website, the website shows off case studies, previous learners experiences, the award winners and events being run all over the country.
For more information on what New Directions is offering during Adult Learners Week click here to download the flyer or alternatively enrol online.
Chris Carter, an independent consultant from Earley is a blog writer with getReading. He writes a monthly blog based around Education and Learning within Reading. This months getLearning blog focuses on "Adult Learners Week".
Click here to read the blog.
Reading Enterprise Clubs
There will be a series of Enterprise Clubs run in Reading. The club is run by people who are in business and know what it really feels like to start trading and keep running! It’s open to anyone wanting to join and you can come to as many club events as you wish. The club is free and runs on a monthly basis. The club can help you to
• Understand what it’s like to start your own business
• Put together a simple business plan
• Find out how you could access finance and start trading
• Meet experts, contacts and network
Click here to find out more information.
Intensive PTLLS Course - *Last chance to train your trainers in PTLLS*
5 Thursdays: 2, 9, 16, 23 May and 6 June 2013 • 09:30 - 16:30
New Directions South Reading Centre, 330 Northumberland Avenue, RG2 8DH • £349
Friday 19 April (10 Weeks) • 09:30 - 12:30
New Directions North Reading Centre, Archway Road, RG4 8HX • £299
For more information download the flyer or email email@example.com for information and an application form.
Last chance to do PTLLS!
Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learner Sector (PTLLS) will be changing from September 2013 & fees will be rising substantially - apply now for courses from April 2013.
It's Official! Learning improves careers prospects!
A third of men and nearly a third of women who participated in further education (FE) got a better job as a result, Skills Minister Matthew Hancock announced today.
This is the key finding from The Impact of FE Learning, a new report from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The research found that the primary motive for FE learning was to improve job prospects, or get a new job.
To find out more please read the Press Release | Full Report
It's official, learning is good for you!
Learning a language or brushing up on your maths skills in your spare time can boost your life satisfaction in the same way as a £750 a year pay rise, according to new research. That was one of the findings from research carried out by leading academics into the benefits of adult learning, commissioned by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, which also found:
• People who take an adult learning course, ranging from an art class to improving IT skills, have better health, are less likely to be depressed and visit their GP less regularly,
• Those with poor basic skills tend to have worse health: for example, people who struggle with maths are three times more likely to have health problems,
• Learning boosts self-confidence and raises people’s aspirations, with those taking part more likely to further their career and expect higher salaries,
• People in their fifties and sixties also benefit, with learning offsetting a natural decline in wellbeing as we age
The full story from the Department for Business, Innovations and Skills can be found here
Has this inspired you to take up a course? Then Enrol Now!
Universal Jobmatch launches on 19 November 2012. This is the Department for Work and Pension’s new, free online job posting and matching service. Universal Jobmatch replaces the current vacancy management services, Employer Direct and Employer Direct Online for companies, and it replaces the Jobcentre Plus jobs and skills search facility for jobseekers.
New technology will help speed up the recruitment process for companies and jobseekers by automatically matching jobseekers CVs and skills to jobs posted online.
This new streamlined service will be accessed through GOV.UK for companies and anyone looking for work. GOV.UK replaced Directgov and Businesslink on 17 October 2012 and will be the best place to find government services and information.
Universal Jobmatch Question and Answer brief for jobseekers (PDF File)
Young entrepreneurs access Start-Up Loans
The first wave of cash from the £82.5 million Start-Up Loans scheme is now being distributed to young entrepreneurs, helping launch up to 30,000 new companies. Start-Up Loans will provide budding entrepreneurs between the ages of 18-24 with a range of support, including access to a business mentor and capital, in the region of £2,500, to help get their business idea moving
Visit the Business, Innovations & Skills (BIS) release for more information.
Family Learning Festival
The National Family Learning Festival is the biggest annual celebration of family learning in the UK. Every year, organisations across the country put on thousands of activities that bring families together for fun, informal learning. This years National Family Learning Festival took place on 13 October - 11 November 2012 and was co-ordinated by the Campaign for Learning.
Visit the Family Learning Festival website for more information on the Festival.
The UK’s biggest skills and careers event, The Skills Show is a unique annual celebration that will inspire the fashion designers, web developers and engineers of tomorrow with exciting opportunities in further education, skills and Apprenticeships.
Held at the NEC Birmingham from 15-17 November, The Skills Show played host to a range of skills competitions, awards and activities. Visitors were inspired by skills in action as the best of the nation’s young talent perform at the WorldSkills UK Competitions; they had a chance to Have a Go at new skills, get up to the minute careers advice, access Apprenticeships and real job opportunities from employers, to help them make that next important step!
The Skills Show Website
Reading Arts Business Club
Reading Arts Business Club is a free informal monthly meeting point for those involved in the arts as a business and especially for those aspiring to develop their art into commercial success.
The Clubs charter is:
• To be a forum for Arts and Arts business in and around Reading
• To meet, share and learn from others experience and best practices
• To help in growing Readings Arts commercial successes
The club launches on the 25 September at Copa Bar, Reading and will run on the last tuesday of each month (Sept 25th, Oct 23rd, Nov 28th) at various venues across Reading.
The club is free. The only cost is in your time in attending and the benefit comes from what you can learn & share. Visit the clubs Facebook page for more information.
Department for Work and Pensions to launch new job posting and matching service
The Department for Work and Pensions is to launch a new job posting and matching service, Universal Jobmatch, in Autumn 2012.
The aim of the Jobcentre Plus, web-based service is to speed up the recruitment process - benefiting jobseekers and employers.
Any jobseeker will be able to set up an account, and upload or build their CVs at any time of the day. The new technology will automatically match their CVs and skills to suitable jobs that are posted on the new service. Universal Jobmatch will also help highlight any skills gaps that a jobseeker may have on their CV and signpost them to where they can get support to address these.
Jobseekers can receive alerts and, whenever a new job is placed that matches their job search criteria, they will receive an email notification about that job. One of the advantages of the new service for benefit claimants is not having to provide evidence of their jobsearch activity on Universal Jobmatch as their personal adviser will be able to view this online.
Greater Reading Course Guide App
The Greater Reading Course Guide App is now available! Although, currently the app is only avalable via Google Play, keep an eye out for it becoming available on the App Store in the coming weeks! A direct link to the app can be found here | Greater Reading Course Guide App
|2012 Sewing Directory Competition
Francis Allison, one of our C&G Fashion learners is one of 5 finalists in the ‘2012 Sewing Directory competition’ for her entry ‘Beach Shells Dress’. The winner will be announced 31 August with the prize of a Janome Memory Craft 5900QC and the other 4 finalists receiving £50 vouchers for Abakhan Fabrics.
Francis Allison's 'Beach Shell Dress' (Left)
|Reading Waterfest 2012
Reading Waterfest 2012 was held despite of the weather conditions on Saturday 16 June. The heavy rain leading up to the event meant that for the first time,Waterfest would not be held along the canal and would not have any boats. Nevertheless, people turned out to enjoy the day of festivities in Forbury Gardens. New Directions attended the event with tutor Jim Pooley (pictured right) who demonstrated his Silver Smithing techniques. Jim is the tutor of the 'Costume Jewellery Making' course which starts in September 2012.
|Healthy Eating Recipe Book
New Directions, in partnership with the NHS have produced a healthy eating recipe book. This ‘eat 4 health’ cookery book will provide you with delicious, healthy recipes to help in your efforts to lose weight | The Healthy Recipe Book
The New 2012-13 Course Guide launched 22 June 2012
The Greater Reading Guide was successfully launched on Friday 22nd June at the University of West London Reading Learning Hub. To get your copy just pop into any of our centres or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
CSCS Testing comes to Reading
The Construction Skills Certificate Scheme has a new test centre in Reading. The new centre is on the 3rd Floor of Hanover House, 202 Kings Road, Reading, RG1 4NN.
For more information about the new centre visit the link | Reading CSCS Test Centre
|Reading Your Way - Open Event
Reading Your Way is a voluntary sector day service for people who are living with or recovering from mental illness. It is a non-medical service which complements statutory services.
The people who use Your Way are at the heart of everything they do. They influence and shape the service they receive. From their social hub on the Oxford Road they offer a range of services. They provide 1:1 support, have an accredited Peer Support programme and offer a daily drop in as well as a range of activities in venues around Reading. Their current programme includes art, yoga, table tennis, gardening, creative writing and meditation. Light refreshments will be available.
You are invited to come and visit them at 127 Oxford Road on 20th June to find out more about their service.
Click to download the poster | Reading Your Way Open Event
|New Directions Level 1 Course in Sustainable Development
To confirm our committment to sustainability here at New Directions we have developed an online course to support and educate our community.
The course is run online using New Directions virtual learning environment 'Moodle', it has all the learning content you need to meet the assessment requirements, as well as activities to practise your new skills and test your learning.
If you are interested in the course then please download the course guide | Sustainable Development Course Guide
This guide will outline the different parts of the course including the course structure, activities within the course and the aims and outcomes of the course.
For more information visit the Sustainability page on the New Directions website | Sustainability Page
|Alok Sharma MP visits New Directions
Reading West MP Alok Sharma visited the New Directions South Reading Centre where he met students who are currently studying on ESOL courses at New Directions along with their tutors and some ESOL members of staff. Alok spoke about the British parliamentary system and government and the work of an MP.
The students were keen to participate and when Alok took questions they were quick to raise issues such as cuts to ESOL funding and the resulting rise in fees, police cuts and the closure of the Creche facilities at New Directions. He then heard about New Directions new Birth Preparation course, from the midwife associated with the course, and the benefits to students through better understanding and improved health of mother and baby, and how the increase in understanding was helping the NHS save money through less need for interpreters.
|Adult Learners Week 2012
This years Adult Learners Week took place during the 12 - 18 May 2012, with a wide range of activities taking place across the country.
New Directions took part in the weeks events putting on a host of free courses for learners to enrol on. The courses were delivered at New Directions centre's and a number of outreach, community and learning venues across Reading. Ranging from Japanese to Arabic and Card Making to Cookery, all the Adult Learners Week courses maintained the same 'Green' theme throughout. The week has proven to be a popular one with learners taking full advantage of the courses on offer.
The learners came up with some great ideas around green living and also learnt new and extra skills as they undertook their activities during the week. New Directions green theme was spread around each of the centre's with bunting made from re-cycled materials displayed around the reception areas along with a Fairtrade Food Display.
Displays of the week will be put up ,around each New Directions centre during half term, for all learners to enjoy, along with pictures from the week.
New Directions recently attended the Tilehurst Eisteddfod, which this year had the theme of Nature. New Directions was in the Arts & Craft category and returned victorious after winning the Tilehurst Eisteddfod Group Cup for Arts, awarded to the group who score the most points in the competition.
Sarah Powell, a year 11 student with Cranbury College has been attending weekly pottery classes at New Directions in Caversham for the past year. Her father, Nigel, is very keen on song sparrows and Sarah wanted to make one out of clay for him.
This project coincided with the theme for entries to the Tilehurst Eisteddfod - Nature.
'Nigel' the song sparrow was entered in the Arts & Crafts sections and Sarah came first with her entry and won the J.E. Illsley Cup in Senior Arts for Clay Modelling.
New Directions had more winners at the Eisteddfod:-
Carol Nielson (Tutor) won the Wright, Hedge & Partners Cup for Adult Arts - Commendation for Skill
Sheryl Quint won the Edith Barkas Cup in Adult Arts for Clay Craft
Janet Walton got a certificate for second place in Clay Craft
Jane Beckett received a certificate for joint second place in Clay Craft
|New Directions visited by Finnish FE group
On Friday 9 March 2012, New Directions were pleased to welcome the Finnish Further Education group to its centres.
The Finnish FE Group (made of of 12 college heads from Central Finland) were visiting New Directions to investigate how we secured funding, provided training and to explore further networking opportunities. New Directions had organised a full day of activities for the group to observe. This included Life Drawing, a WEA Science Class, a 'Mums to Be' course and a demonstration of New Directions online course 'Eco Advantage'.
The Finnish group were taken to the Hamilton Centre, Caversham Centre and South Reading Centre where they met the Head of Education in Reading, Job Club Members and a variety of staff from New Directions. The Finnish group received gifts of cards and pottery which had been specially made by New Directions students.
Marja Peltonen, Jyvaskyla Finnish Further Education said; "We had a very successful trip to England, exploring and networking and we are now looking at opportunities where we can work together in the future"
|Reading Arts Week 2012
A week-long event showcasing emerging and established artists from across Reading. Art work created by local residents, students and artists alike. Events, workshops and exhibitions open to the public.
Starting with the Reading Arts Week Exhibition on Saturday 23rd June and finishing with the Big Art Picnic on Friday 29th June, the week gives aspiring artists the opportunity to show off their work to the residents of Reading Reading Arts Week Website
Artists are allowed to submit up to two pieces of work and submission is free to all those who are currently studying on a full time or part time course in the Reading area. If you wish to submit your work directly then please use the Online Submission Form
|7 New Confidence Boosting English Language Skills Courses
New Directions is offering residents whose first language is not English more ways to boost their English language skills, by offering a wider engaging range of speaking, reading and language classes. Our range of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses offer seven different ways to learn English:
Community Conversation groups • Intensive 7 week Job Centre Plus course • Birth Preparation Classes • E-Learning
Formal Conversation Classes • Part Time Cambridge ESOL • Numeracy for ESOL
|JobCentre Plus - Digital Services & Upcoming Events!
JobCentre Plus is now on Twitter! @readingjcp for all the latest information and vacancies around Reading.
The JobCentre plus app makes job hunting in your area easier, the app is free and can be downloaded for iphone, ipad or android phones.
Latest information from JobCentre Plus is available in the latest edition of the Customer Newsletter | JobCentre Plus Customer Newsletter
Interested in being your own boss? To find out about support for starting self employment visit | jobkit - being your own boss
|Half Term Activities
During the February half term New Directions South opened its doors to adults and children for a range of art & craft activities including card making, jewellery, glass tea lights, making paints & sketchbooks and reworking old clothes. The week was a tremendous success with everyone having a good time and making some excellent products. For more information on childrens events going on around Reading then visit the What's On in Reading webpage.
|New Directions 'Good' Ofsted Report
On Thursday 5th January 2012, New Directions received the result of the Ofsted Inspection held on 21-25 November. Overall effectiveness was rated as good by Ofsted and capacity to improve was also rated as good. Inspectors were also impressed with the progress made at New Directions in addressing areas listed for improvement during its previous full inspection in 2009.
To find the full report please visit the Ofsted website | New Directions Ofsted Reports Page
|New Employability Courses
A new set of employability courses designed to help people back into work have been organised and are being run by New Directions. Whether you are looking for a new job, change in career, starting off on the career ladder or returning to work, these new induction sessions are for you! To find out more follow this link or call New Directions on 0345 842 0012.