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We work every day with our members and likeminded organisations to ensure that politicians and policy makers across Ireland and in Brussels understand the importance of lifelong learning for creating a more economically prosperous, but also socially inclusive society. As advocates for the sector, we want to make sure that the issues facing learners and practitioners in adult and community education in Ireland are on every candidate’s radar as they seek election to Local and City Councils and the European Parliament. Why are Local Elections Important to Adult and Community Education? Education…
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AONTAS manages the One Step Up Information Referral Service as part of an ERASMUS+ KA3 funded project which supports the European Agenda for Adult Learning and the Upskilling Pathways Recommendation focusing on ‘supply and uptake’ - specifically aimed at people with less than Leaving Certificate level (NFQ level 4/5). The service includes: an interactive website an Information Booklet a Freephone helpline (1800 303 669) One Step Up has continued to evolve since its launch in 2013 and we are currently in the process of redeveloping the website to make it even more user-friendly. Developments…
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Dearbháil and Ben were delighted to be invited to Bratislava to take part in the project’s inaugural meeting to share perspectives on basic skills policy and practice in Ireland and to join in the discussion on how best to develop basic skills provision in Slovakia and across Europe. AONTAS’ presentation focused on the implementation of the Upskilling Pathways Recommendation to boost access to – and take-up of – quality learning opportunities for adults who may not have completed an upper secondary level educational qualification. We also outlined the practical implementation of basic skills development…
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AONTAS was delighted to have two adult learners as part of our delegation to Luxembourg, giving us an opportunity to highlight the importance and value of learner participation and representation at European level. Louise and Maria both participated in a learner panel discussion at an International Women’s Day Policy Event hosted by AONTAS in March as part of the Adult Learners’ Festival, and gave passionate and powerful testimonies on their experiences of community education. As a result of this they were invited to Luxembourg to share their personal experiences of returning to education with…
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As soon as Niamh O’Reilly got the message out over the airwaves about the value and benefit of adult and community education there was an immediate positive reaction from across the country. AONTAS and the One Step Up Information and Referral Service (OSU) saw a massive spike in the number and rate of people enquiring about their education and training options. AONTAS received as many requests for information within the few hours and subsequent days following the radio interview as it did since the start of the year.  Those getting in touch expressed being inspired to re-enter education in order…
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On the One Step Up Calendar we promote open days and information sessions hosted by Education and Training Boards, further education and training colleges, community centres, third level institutes and other learning centres all over the country. In 2018 approximately 7,000 people used One Step Up to find out about nearly 600 events nationwide. These events were submitted by adult and community education providers across Ireland via the One Step Up Calendar.                                                 So if you are an education provider, why not put yourself on the One Step Up map and help…
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Whether you're looking to acquire new skills, achieve qualifications, gain employment, build self-confidence or meet new people, we can help you find the path that suits your needs. Last year approximately 7,000 people set out on this path by answering four basic questions about themselves in 60 seconds: 1.      What age group am I in? 2.      Which county do I live in? 3.      What information am I hoping to find out? 4.      Am I retired or employed? While we can quantify the demand for One Step Up, the positive impact on people's lives, relationships with their families, friends, local…
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    Meeting New People Getting involved in a new course or activity allows you to meet new people, to socialise and to learn from others. It also allows you to share your experience, perspective and ideas with others and to feel valued within a new community of learners and educators. Employment Opportunities Learning motivates you to achieve your career goals and equips you with skills that are highly valued in the workplace. Returning to education demonstrates to employers that you are willing to work and to adapt to new challenges. It also adds to your qualifications and experience…
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There was a very strong focus on apprenticeships; raising the important role which adult and community education can play in supporting people to access apprenticeships -particularly for those who are underrepresented such as women, adults over 23, and many more who are excluded from, or require additional supports to, participating in STEM education and training which involves maths. A significant proportion of the conference highlighted the tensions that can exist between FET/VET for labour market purposes versus the broader role of learning adopted by EU VET policy; especially the European…
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FE Teacher Registration Criteria until 1st January 2019 A common misperception among FET practitioners is that practitioners need to have a Teaching Council recognised teacher education qualification (TEQ) in order to register as an FE teacher with the Council.  However, until the end of 2018, a registration criterion contained in the 2009 Teaching Council registration regulations will continue to be applied.  This criterion facilitates the full registration of individuals as FE teachers without a teaching qualification, if they: completed or commenced their primary degree (NFQ Level 8) prior…
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