My role in this post is to recognise the need for ESOL classes and to co-ordinate and support delivery. Having been a literacies and ESOL tutor with the WEA for more than ten years, I am passionate about bringing the very best learning experience to our learners. We have an exceptional team of sessional ESOL tutors who have a wide range of teaching skills. Supporting our tutors is of utmost importance to me, as it can be an isolating experience teaching in a rural area. This support includes keeping in touch regularly and the delivery of CPD sessions to our established pool of experienced sessional ESOL tutors.

Working in partnership brings new ideas, ways of working, learning and the sharing of knowledge. We have partnered with Aberdeen University, Elphinstone Institute and Modo to deliver a creative integration project aimed at improving social bonds and lessening social isolation in four coastal towns in Aberdeenshire.

We are working in partnership with NESCOL (North East Scotland College) and CLD to deliver a number of SQA accredited ESOL courses to our New Scots. We also deliver accredited and non-accredited ESOL courses.

Successful language acquisition can be encouraged by immersion. Immersion in one’s community can bring a sense of belonging. Learners are actively encouraged to join our Conversation Cafés and develop their speaking skills whilst being supported by a large group of volunteers.

Supporting our volunteers gives me great pleasure. Their breadth of skills, knowledge, compassion and willingness to learn about ESOL learners’ lives encourages me to find ways of positively expanding their experience by offering training in Peer Education and out-sourcing other types of training for them.

Katrena Wilkie
ESOL Education Co-ordinator