We think school-community links can improve the prospects for both: children making the transition between different kinds of school and the participation of young people and adults in learning beyond 16. By making what is learnt in school more relevant and by putting learners at the centre of a more holistic network for edcuation – with different ways of learning available to them – we believe both adults and children would be encouraged to learn. We have made it clear that our enthusiasm for school-community links isn’t based on wanting to see the community influence what is taught in school. That is a matter for teachers and curriculum professionals and, ultimately, for politicians and others. We do believe, however, that appropriate community links – including with the local business community – could improve the outcomes of learning.
What’s stopping us?
We think the main barriers to using school-community links to enable better lifelong learning are lack of awareness and understanding of the value of wider education and support outside school.
What might help us?
In service training days and other opportunities for highlighting the work of community networks and groups that could support and extend education could be taken. Some of the other shared activities we have mentioned could help to embed new practices and ways of working.