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This programme examines adult literacy and basic adult education in England, though it begins with the experience of adult literacy work at popular adult centres in Portugal. Problems resulting fro...m the low priority given by the government to this field are explored. The film includes scenes at Peckham Book Place (a community education project in South London), in an orthodox one to one literacy scheme with a volunteer tutor, and in preparatory classes run by the Manpower Services Commission. The failure of many local education authorities to make satisfactory provision in this area is questioned, and the refusal of Sefton Borough Council to permit filming is noted.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: E200, Contemporary issues in education
Item code: E200; 11
First transmission date: 02-08-1981
Published: 1981
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:23:46
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Producer: Edward Milner
Contributors: Caroline Quina; Nick Small; Julia McCaffery; Ursula Rohde; Tanya Whitty; Bruce Caulfield; Pat Stowel
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Adult literacy; Peckham Bookplace; Cape Verde; Cascais centre Portugal; Charles Wootton adult education centre; Manpower Services Commission; Preparatory classes; Sefton; Write first time; Knowsley adult education centre
Footage description: The programme opens with shots of a Portugese shanty town outside Lisbon, with music over. Film of immigrants from Cape Verde, over which narrator Nick Small describes the nature of such immigrant communities. Carolina Quina, a voluntary adult literacy worker, shows us round the Cascais popular cultural centre. After she describes the facilities, Small comments on the political content of the teaching, over shots of a class in progress. Film of the facilities at The Book Place, an adult education centre in Peckham. Tanya Whitty from the centre explains in voiceover how The Book Place operates. Two students explain in interview why they believe the centre beneficial. Over shots of a Bookplace meeting for both staff and students Small comments on the informal approach. In interview Ursula Rohde and Juliet McCaffery, who work at the centre, describe their publishing programme. Further shots of the meeting, after which Whitty describes the centre's funding. Shots of a teacher taking one student for a reading lesson, over which Small explains the dependence of British adult literacy work on volunteers. We observe a short sequence from the lesson, then both teacher and student are interviewed about the usefulness of one to one teaching involving unqualified volunteer tutors. Juliet McCaffery and Ursula Rohde are interviewed about the limitations of using unqualified volunteers for teaching literacy. Shots of Liverpool docks. In interview Pat Stowel explains the need for greater adult literacy in an area of high unemployment. Interview in Liverpool with Bruce Caulfield of the Manpower Services Commission in which he describes MSC's commitment to adult education. We observe an MSC class discussion, then interview one of the students who expresses enthusiasm for the course. Over shots of another MSC class. Small comments on the purpose of such lessons. Two MSC tutors explain what kind of education their students require. Shots of the Charles Wootton community centre in Liverpool, where we see a literacy teacher with a student. The head of the centre, Jimmy Rogers, describes the educational needs of black adults in Liverpool. Further shots of teaching in progress over which Small comments on the informal educational approach used at the centre. Both Rogers and Caulfield comment briefly on the problem of finding work after completing their courses. An animated map shows the location of Liverpool and Sefton Education Authorities over which Small compares the provision for adults in the two areas. The refusal of Sefton to contribute to the rogramme is noted, over shots of the education offices there. A student from a Liverpool adult education centre is interviewed about her future educational prospects. Shots of a class at the Charles Wootton centre.
Master spool number: OU3569
Production number: FOUE051A
Videofinder number: 528
Available to public: no