What is Community Education?
Community Education works with adults who wish to return to or continue their education, offering a learner-centred approach involving personal supports and tuition leading to positive personal, social and economic outcomes. It focuses its work on people who are distant from education and the labour market, and is generally developed in local community projects and centres. Community Education is grounded on principles of justice, equality, social inclusion and citizenship. Starting from people’s current situation, groups are facilitated to work together in creative and participative ways to set and achieve goals such as employment, personal and social change, formal certification of their learning up to Level 8, and community activity (Aontas, 2016).
Ramsgrange Education and Development
Community Education in South West Wexford Family Resource Centre is delivered under two strands. The Back to Education Initiative which is free to eligible learners and funded under Waterford & Wexford Education and Training Board, and Community Education paid courses managed by R.E.a.D (Ramsgrange Education and Development @ SWWFRC).
Back to Education Initiative – see our separate page for information on courses
Courses @ R.E.a.D. – see our separate page for information on courses
The majority of participants on courses provided by REaD are updating their skills for work purposes or are hoping to re-enter the labour market and need various components to retrain in new areas. Learners work towards major awards on a part time basis to fit around other commitments.
Courses provided by REaD are run in the evening time mainly one evening a week for 10 weeks covering 30 hours class time. Day time classes can be provided when requested.
What are the outcomes for Community Education learners?
A number of research reports have shown that participating in Community Education supports people towards many different outcomes at a personal, family and community level. These include –
- New skills – both personal and vocational
- Mainstream employment
- Pathway to continuing education
- Work experience programmes
- Personal development and confidence building
- Active citizenship, community activity and empowerment
- Social Inclusion
- Improved quality of life for individuals, their families and communities (Aontas, 2016).