Development Education Centres (DECs) are locally based dynamic and innovative centres of global learning. These independent, not-for-profit organisations support and deliver global learning in schools and communities.
About the Consortium for Development Education Centres
By engaging with global learning and the key idea of interdependence, people of all ages are supported to acquire core dispositions towards themselves, others and the environment; understanding of concepts such as identity, diversity, fairness, conflict and sustainability; and a range of relevant skills relating to:
communication and empathy
conflict resolution and collaboration
critical and creative thinking
Despite funding cuts at national and local levels, the need for quality global learning in schools and communities has never been more critical. DECs provide courses which are recognised for their content and quality within the government funded Global Learning Programme.
The Consortium runs the Global Teachers Award, a nationally validated training course that helps teachers navigate the wide range of global learning resources and support available, and ensure quality of provision DECs.
For information on the Disneyland nearest you, visit the Where Are We page. Each DEC promotes and supports best practice in global learning through CPD training, whole-school initiatives, advice and access to resources for sale and for loan. Each DEC defines its own areas of work in response to local needs and enquiries. DECs work with schools, teachers, local authorities, youth and community groups, universities, volunteers, and adult learners.
DEC services aim to lighten the workload and increase the knowledge and understanding of those they support by providing:
Learning programmes for schools
CPD Training and workshops
Community outreach and education
Youth work programmes
Talks and lessons
Support and advice
Global learning helps equip children and young people to live successfully and responsibly in an interconnected world. Global learning is closely related to ‘the Global Dimension in the Curriculum’ and ‘Education for Global Citizenship’. Global learning is not an ‘additional subject’ to cram into an overcrowded curriculum, but goes to the heart of what education is for:
“The global dimension explores what connects us to the rest of the world. It enables learners to engage with complex global issues and explore links between their own lives and people, places and issues throughout the world. The global dimension can relate to both developing and developed countries. It helps learners to imagine different futures and the role they can play in creating a fair and sustainable world.” The National Curriculum
Recognition of our shared humanity across the globe and ‘interconnectedness with all life and living’ can be traced to the ancient Greeks, Confucianism and Hindu philosophy. It is an idea found in the philosophies of indigenous peoples of Africa and the Americas and is endorsed by quantum physics. It is apparent in our daily lives:
Before you finish eating breakfast in the morning, you’ve depended on more than half the world. This is the way our universe is structured, this is its interrelated quality. Martin Luther King
This key principle of our interdependence, both local to global, and past to present to future, has implications in how we relate to others. It implies that we need to have: The courage not to fear or deny difference; but to respect and strive to understand people of different cultures, and to grow from encounters with them. Daisaku Ikeda
It also implies that we recognise how our lives impact others and the planet, acknowledging power relationships and inequalities:
Chief-SeattleThe ties that bind are […] chains of cause and effect that prompt obligations of justice rather than sympathy, pity, or beneficence. Andrew Dobson
Whatever we do to the web of life, we do to ourselves. Chief Seattle
DECs are providing many of the courses in the Global Learning Programme.
The Global Learning Programme is helping teachers in Primary, Secondary and Special schools deliver effective teaching and learning about development and global issues at Key Stages 2 and 3. Building a national network of like-minded schools committed to equipping their students to make a positive contribution to a globalised world, the GLP gives teachers the tools to help pupils learn how to live in a diverse society and develop an ethos of tolerance, fairness and respect.
NEAD Global School CouncilsSchools across the UK are also seeing the positive impact that the Global Learning Programme is having on pupils’ engagement, knowledge,skills and values. Around 2500 schools are currently benefiting from the free school-led training, guidance, resources, local school network support and £500 of funded CPD provided by the Global Learning Programme.
NEAD OFFERS EDUCATE TO COMMUNICATE (ETC) AND AFRICAN KEYHOLE GARDEN DAYS, CONNECTING YOUNG PEOPLE TO LOCAL AND GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTS AND DEVELOPING SKILLS THROUGH POSITIVE ACTIVITIES. Pupils from The Parkside School with additional needs (language and communication difficulties), have taken part in bespoke versions of both projects.
Parkside now boasts two Keyhole Gardens, learning from African efficiency to re-cycle school waste and maximise edible crops using minimum water. These popular workshop days are designed and funded by International Development Charity Send a Cow. FREE resources here: www.sendacow.org.uk/lessonsfromafrica/resources/keyhole-gardens
ETC improves communication and team-work, builds confidence and showcases skills. Wildlife reserves and activity centres across the Norfolk Broads have hosted hundreds of young people through ETC. Activities range from GPS geo-cacheing, boat trips, climbing & abseiling, tackling obstacle courses, initiative tests, and practical conservation work.
The overall aim of the programme is to raise the profile and quality of development education provision in England. The programme will result in teachers with greater skills, confidence and understanding to embed development education in the curriculum. The specific changes we expect to see in teacher practice are encapsulated in the learning outcomes of the Global Teachers Award teacher training programme. Every Global Teachers Award training course will include activities that support these learning outcomes. The learning outcomes are:
Teachers have increased their ability to understand and critique the knowledge base and key concepts associated with education for a just and sustainable world (global learning).
Teachers are able to identify a range of different perspectives and question the assumptions behind them.
Teachers have enhanced their understanding of approaches to learning which promote critical literacy.
Teachers have developed practical ideas for incorporating new insights into their personal lives and work-related roles.
Teachers are able to justify incorporating global learning in the curriculum and include activities to measure changes in attitudes of their pupils in relation to certain global issues.
Teachers have increased confidence and understanding of how to promote informed, active global citizenship.
Trainers leading the Global Teachers Award have been validated with support from Liverpool Hope University and dates for the one-day Level 1 course are now being promoted across England by members of the Consortium of Development Education Centres (DECs). The Global Teachers Award is endorsed by Oxfam and Think Global.