Networking and Representation

ESB is actively linked into several networks which enable a good flow of information and debate about changes and innovations in CDL. The web site is being developed to enable a greater sharing of information and good practice. ESB representatives sit on the ETS panel of the NYA and undertake dual validations. In addition, an ESB representative has a seat on TAG – the professional association of lecturers in youth and community work - and the ESB has been involved in their workshops. ESB representatives also ran workshops at the Third Sector Research conference on the future of community work. Recent research commissioned by the ESB has enabled the expansion of current networks to develop a wider data base of people interested and willing to contribute to the issues affecting community development learning and qualifications.

Information & Guidance

We aim to provide good quality information to others working in the Community Development Learning field. ESB is committed to endorsing high quality courses and work-based learning and we offer guidance for organisations looking to be endorsed and help our currently endorsed courses to maintain their standards throughout their period of endorsement. We provide external expert input into developing programmes and attend internal university validation panels to support the development of CD degrees. We work with community based groups and organisations to support the development of new programmes to meet their needs. We provide guidance o Awarding Bodies as they develop new units and qualifications.

Strategic Developments

ESB has always been recognised and actively involved in the strategic bodies concerned with CD and CDL, from Paulo, LLUK, and LSIS when they existed.

Historically, the ESB has been active in designing the revised Learning and Qualification framework for CD in England and in developing the different learning routes within this framework, such as the qualifications within the original QCF framework, Recognition and HE programmes. The Board is continually examining the changing context for CDL and incorporating the practical outcomes of its strategic work into its organisational practice. ESB is involved in the regular updating of the HEI benchmark statements for youth and community.

ESB is currently looking to rewrite the Learning and Qualifications framework and is exploring how this could link with a complementary one for youth work. The implications of the Sainsbury review for the provision of HE programmes is also currently being considered.

Quality Assurance

ESB has been recognised by all the different government bodies such as Paulo, LLUK, and LSIS, when they existed. ESB is recognised by universities and other Awarding Bodies for its quality assurance of CD programmes and qualifications and is listed on the KISS HEI system. ESB is involved in the regular updating of the HEI benchmark statements for youth and community, sits on the ETS of the NYA and is involved with them in the dual validation of youth and community programmes.

The credibility of ESB comes from our long history as a specialist quality assuring body and involvement in all the above bodies. In addition, the membership reflecting people from all aspects of community development - as practitioners, lecturers, programme managers, employers and trainers - which ensures currency, relevancy and a demonstrable expertise that people value and recognise.

In practical terms the ESB provides Quality Assurance for all kinds of Community Development Learning. Courses are endorsed for colleges, universities, training centres and Recognition centres. The ESB validates community development degrees and youth and community degree, and non-degree programmes in this field and has also certificated Recognition schemes and training the trainers programmes.

The ESB has developed and refined a peer review process using readers and reporters to consider the information provided by learning providers and map to our criteria, which are derived from the Community Development National Occupational Standards. The process aims to be a developmental one which promotes the sharing of good practice across the field.

To find out more about why getting endorsed adds quality and value to your course see our endorsement pages.

International Work

ESB is actively involved in projects across Europe and beyond to promote good quality CDL. Most Board members have links with projects abroad and have expertise in working with partners in other countries. A more strategically planned approach to our international work is currently being developed. The ESB were lead partners in SLIC (Sharing Learning in Communities), a Grundtvig funded project designed to share learning across nine countries. The focus of this project was learning for active citizenship and community development.

Find out more about the SLIC project here.

SLICUKVisit2The SLIC participants in Manchester in June 2014 - working hard on evaluation!