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#2 - March 2011

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The second newsletter of the Eur-Alpha network has arrived! Do not miss the invitations for the next workshops, the Eur-Alpha news and the ones from the literacy sector in Europe. A printable version is available in PDF.

We invite you to widely spread this newsletter and to subscribe now.

Enjoy the reading.

The editorial staff.

 Workshop Invitation

 Trainers workshop (October 2011)

“Literacy and Numeracy: Examples of good practices for learners self-determination” - Mâcon, France.

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© ceesjw

The second trainers workshop will be held in Mâcon (France) from 24 till 28 October 2011. Organised by AEFTI, this workshop aims at selecting, testing, trying out and discovering pedagogical practices facilitating the learners self-determination.

After the traditional ice-breaker activities, pedagogical session, most of them proposed by Eur-Alpha members, will show the emancipating scope of certain practices. The evenings will be devoted to more relaxing and informal activities such as an improvisational theatre session about the trainers posture and attitude.

The evenings are also meant to be spaces of exchanges where the trainers will have the opportunity to present to their European colleagues a pedagogical practice they consider emancipatory.

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Cluny Abbey
© Calips

In the middle of the week, a visit to the Cluny Abbey, an unmissable place to visit in Burgundy, will allow us to take some fresh air as well as to think about different aspects of a cultural visit with learners in literacy.

Original approaches, speakers from different European countries and spaces of exchange are at the centre of this workshop that promises to be very rich. See the detailed program and application form. The pre-registration period ends 31 March 2011.

In order to keep some proportionality, 2 participants (maximum 3) will be selected per country.

 Learners workshop (October 2011)

“What’s your opinion? European learners’ voices on best practices in the field of literacy” – Barcelona, Spain.

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Barcelona, Plaça Reial
© Ralf Roletschek

Literacy learners made an appointment in October for their second meeting (24 - 30 October 2011). The workshop, organised by FACEPA in the region of Barcelona, is linked to the work of the Learners scientific Committee in the Eur-Alpha network. After the first learners workshop in Namur, which has been very participatory and exciting, FACEPA wants to go on working on the same lines, providing new and interesting experiences.

FACEPA build the program around 3 axes.

  • The good practices that will be tested by learners. Those practices are collected from Eur-Alpha members and from learners groups in Europe.
  • The writing of the Manifesto. The Manifesto is a charter for literacy that Eur-Alpha scientific Committee started to write. It will be presented to the learners and they will help complete it.
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Parc Güell
© Year of the dragon
  • Cultural and artistic activities. For example, learners will visit Gaudí’s masterpieces and work on Gaudí’s art.

At the end of the week, learners will have the incredible opportunity to participate in an International Conference for learners in literacy where more than 300 learners will be present, coming from Spain and elsewhere.

There will be a maximum of 20 non-Spanish participants and no more than 3 participants from the same country in other to keep some linguistic and cultural diversity.

The detailed program and the application file will soon be available on our website.

 Eur-Alpha News

 Eur-Alpha is growing up!

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Andragoški center Slovenije
Slovenian Institute for Adult Education

To extend the network geographically and diversify our approaches, we were looking for partners in Central and Eastern Europe. The Slovenian Institute for Adult Education (SIAE) agreed to join us as full member. This renowned institute works in a lot of aspects of the adult education field, notably literacy.

It is also with great pleasure that Eur-Alpha welcomes four new associate members: CFPPA du Morvan (France), BAGV (Germany), Va Savoirs (France) and EduBridge (Poland).

Those new members will be presented in detail in the third newsletter.

 Looking for a Grundtvig Assistant

The Grundtvig assistantship is a program that offers the opportunity to a (future) adult trainer to reinforce his/her practice in another European country.

Lire et Ecrire Belgium would like to host a Grundtvig assistant in order to facilitate the daily management of the network. See the detailed job offer.

Any adult education organisation can host a Grundtvig assistant for 3 to 10 months. A European grant given to the assistant covers the living expenses and the travel cost.

If you’ve been thinking about hosting a Grundtvig Assistant or becoming one, you will find more information on the European Commission website.

 Eur-Alpha and the Haute-Normandie Region in France

In February, The Regional Economic and social Committee (CESER) of Haute-Normandie demonstrated interest in Eur-Alpha activities. Given the concerning rate of illiteracy in the region (13 % of the adult population against 9 % at the national level), the CESER considered urgent to draw the attention on this situation. The Committee works on a study project entitled “Illiteracy and professional life in Haute-Normandie”.

During a two days visit in Brussels, the councillors of the CESER had the opportunity to meet our representative, Jacques Bosman, who explained Eur-Alpha objectives. After political meetings with delegates of the European institutions, the CESER councillors particularly appreciated to learn more about the grassroots realities of the literacy sector.

Eur-Alpha is getting known! We welcome this and expect it to continue.

 Literacy News

This column is open to Eur-Alpha’s members and to the actors of the literacy sector in Europe. We invite you to publicise here literacy tools you are particularly proud of, trainings you organise or stories of learners and trainers that keep the literacy sector alive in your region,...

Any news you wish to publicise can be sent to

 A High-Level Expert Group on literacy

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Princess Laurentien, chairman of the Expert Group
© European Union, 2011

Last 1 February 2011, the European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, Mrs Androulla Vassiliou, launched a High-Level Expert Group on literacy. Chaired by Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, the group has for objective to give visibility and political importance to the issue of raising literacy levels in Europe. The 11 members of the group, experts on literacy from academia, politics and business, will present policy proposals to the Commission in mid-2012.

Eur-Alpha submitted a request to the Commission to be kept informed of this project progresses and to be allowed to express reflections and recommendations.

See the press release and the presentation of the experts.

 AEFTI federation celebrates its 40th birthday

AEFTI federation, full member of Eur-Alpha, will blow its 40 candles in 2011. We take this opportunity to wish them many more years of existence dedicated to the fight against illiteracy and the promotion of the right to learn for migrants and disadvantaged population.

The AEFTI network (Teaching and Learning Association for immigrants workers and their family) was founded in 1971 by people from associations and from the trade-union, political and academic worlds moved by humanist concerns. From then on, local associations appeared in the regions and the federation counts 9 of them to this date.

Savoirs et Formations - Recherche et Pratiques (S&F-R&P), the scientific review of AEFTI, invites submissions for its upcoming issue. See the detailed call for contributions is available (French).

 Spring University – Lire et Ecrire Belgium

In the spring, nature comes back to life and the sun reappears. The spring is also the time Lire et Ecrire chose to organise its 8th Spring University. Entitled, “Emancipating teaching methods and socially aware approaches”, the Spring University offers 11 workshops to choose from. The University takes place between 11 and 15 April 2011.

The work language is French.

Learn more and register (French).

 The Saimiri Review – presented by CFAES “Georges Rapon” (French Guiana)

The CFAES “Georges Rapon” brings to us the 8th issue of the Saimiri Review to introduce the Regional Program for Education and Basic Skills (PREFOB) of which the CFAES is coordinator and leader.

Often called the squirrel monkey, the Saimiri is constantly on the move and has the reputation to be the most talkative monkey in South America. It is hardly surprising then that the PREFOB Guiana chose to name its newsletter after him.

Based on partnership and networking, PREFOB promotes actions contributing to the development of basic skills among the population of French Guiana. PREFOB acts at the local level (in the neighbourhoods, the districts and the pools of employment) and ensure a regional cooperation.

Download the Saïmiri Review #8 (French).

 Next newsletter

Any news to be publicised on the third newsletter can be sent to

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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.

This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Education and Culture DG