Family and Community Learning

Growing a lifelong love of learning with communities in Wiltshire

Welcome to the Family and Community Learning page. We offer learners long term, planned programmes with clear progression pathways: Discover – Develop- Achieve, leading to the development of new skills, improved personal achievement and positive outcomes. Courses can lead to qualifications, employability skills, jobs and volunteering.

Who we are
Sign up and contact us
News and stories
Important Information
Online courses
Course achievements in the last two years

Family and Community Learning includes a range of online, community based and outreach learning opportunities designed to help people of different ages and backgrounds to:

  • Gain a new skill

  • Reconnect with learning

  • Prepare to progress to formal courses

  • Learn how to support their children better

Courses are funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency. Courses are no cost to you if you are 19+, have been a resident in UK/EU for 3+years, have less than 5 GCSEs grades A-C, in receipt of benefits, a service family or you may have other issues that joining a course could help you with. You might be stuck in a rut or going through a difficult time? We want to hear from people who are unsure about if they can join and we are always happy to talk things through.

Please get in touch with us via email at or call the team on 01225 770478, leave a voicemail and we will call you back to have a chat.

Meet the Family and Community Learning Tutors

Image of CaraCara Williams


I love teaching learners who haven’t been successful at school. I love showing them that with the right support and methods, they can and do achieve with us.

Laura Trowbridge


I have been a Family and Community Learning Tutor for almost 12 years – and it is still my dream job!  I love being able to make a difference in our learners’ lives.  Supporting our learners to overcome barriers to learning and take steps along their path to further study, volunteering or work is an amazing privilege.  Having a teacher who believes in you is a fantastic catalyst; my motivation is that I would like all my learners to achieve their goals.

Image of EmilyEmily Tavakoli


I do what I do because I’m a passionate believer that education can change lives. I see proof of this in my job on a daily basis. I see people becoming healthier, more confident and able to help their children. I see people aspiring to better themselves and their families through learning new skills and I see people learning English so they can integrate into our communities. We are building stronger, more resilient communities by doing what we do.

Image of AndrewAndrew Whiley


The relationships are what I most enjoy about being a tutor. The thing I like most about teaching is my learners. I like interacting with them, I like learning from them, I like helping them understand the content of any course and I like when they see the connection between what they are learning and their lives.

Image of VanessaVanessa Millar


What I love about my job is watching my learners grow in confidence as they gradually believe that they can do things they never thought they could.  For many of our learners, returning to any type of education is terrifying and I feel privileged that they choose our service to be their first step back into learning.


We have been busily designing  FREE interactive courses to help you negotiate these tricky times. If you want to access learning for yourself or your family, we have support for you. Some courses are delivered live in an online classroom at a stated  time, some courses will have some live group sessions and then time allocated to take at your pace whenever it suits your family. Tasks will need to be completed before the next session. Details will be stated within the course information.

To participate in the online courses, learners will need access to the internet and have an email address.

Check out all of our courses below

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Visit here for guidance on returning to face to face learning

Check out all of our upcoming courses below

Helping My Child to Learn Phonics

5th November at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Boost Your Job Applications

15th November at 10:00 am - 1:30 pm

Click here to view the full course calendar

Contact us

Please get in touch with us via email at or call the team on 01225 770478, leave a voicemail and we will call you back to have a chat.

Sign up for a course

Click here to go to the sign up form

Our learners’ stories

Stephen joined the maths course after doing Confidence and New Directions. Having left school at 14, his knowledge of maths had some gaps but this did not deter him. He approached every session with positivity and focus, determined to achieve this qualification.  Successfully managing family commitments and a recent diagnosis of Aspergers, he excelled on the course and was successful in his aim gaining a Functional Skills Maths Level 1 qualification. This has helped him take his next steps towards employment by increasing his skills and confidence. He now volunteers regularly at a health food shop, whilst looking for paid work.

What have you enjoyed most about the courses?

Meeting new people, learning new math skills, and gaining confidence.

How has your tutor supported you?

Both my tutors supported me in every way possible. They made me feel at ease and ready to digest all the mathematics I was about to learn. They also made the learning environment very positive and fun to be in.

What have you gained most from attending?

I am currently in a work placement and in time I am going to get back into paid employment. In the mean time I may consider other courses through Wiltshire family learning.

What would you say to other people who are considering attending a Family and Community Learning course?

I would say to definitely go for it. any skill is good.

What have you enjoyed most about the courses?

Learning something new about myself. Meeting new people on a one-to-one basis. Being taken for the person I am today.

How has your tutor supported you?

The support from my tutor has been amazing…patient when I misunderstood, answering questions in a way that I could comprehend the differences. She has also the ability of directing your focus in a positive outlook.

What have you gained most from attending?

  1. To say ‘no’ occasionally
  2. To accept myself
  3. Confidence in smaller group meetings, which has allowed me to comment in areas like the book club rather than just listening.

What would you say to other people who are considering attending a Family and Community Learning course?

Just do it…well worth the effort as everyone can get something new into their lives… have passed on items I learnt to family and friends.

Important information

The vision and strategy for FaCL programmes supports a targeted learning programme which helps engage individuals of different ages and backgrounds to gain new skills, reconnect with learning, learn how to support their children better and prepare them for progression to further learning, employment and volunteering. The focus is on delivering high quality learning that includes partnership working across the Council and communities countywide.


Family and Community Learning was inspected in January 2020, and this can be found here:

The Wiltshire Family and Community Learning governors play an important part in ensuring:

  • Accountability
  • Evaluating performance
  • Raising the standards

of the Family and Community Learning (FaCL) service. They monitor the services and activities provided for local people and make collective decisions on matters such as the policies and development of the FaCL service.

Drawn from the local community, the governors are all volunteers who are appointed for their relevant skills and experience. They include:

  • Councillors from Wiltshire Council
  • Learners
  • Staff
  • Representatives from schools and children’s centres in Wiltshire

How the Family and Community Learning service meets the needs of the local people by offering learning opportunities that lead to the best possible outcomes for learners.

  • Challenge and advise to ensure that the service aligns with the vision and strategic objectives of the Council’s Business plan
  • Determine how the FaCL service programmes of learning encompass the wider needs of the targeted learner groups whilst ensuring numeracy, literacy and ICT are embedded throughout the curriculum
  • Determine how the FaCL service secures community engagement and how this is reflected in strategic decision-making
  • Seek reassurance that learner feedback and the learner voice is acted upon and that learners are aware that they have influenced change and how this translates into daily practice.

Ensure the Family and Community Learning service is appropriately accountable for finances, quality, equality and for the standards and performance.

  • Scrutinise, advise and approve strategic and financial planning decisions related to the Family and Community Learning programme and ESFA funding
  • Be fully cognisant of the FaCL service’s most recent Ofsted inspection report and any recommendations contained in it
  • Approve the annual Self-Assessment report and the annual Quality Improvement plan.
  • Determine how equality and diversity issues are foregrounded in the work of the Family and Community Learning Team

Ensure the Family and Community Learning service fulfils their duties towards service partners

  • Scrutinise effective local partnerships to bring together and consult with key providers and relevant local agencies and services
  • Ensure the FaCL service works alongside individuals, groups and communities, developing joint plans and evaluating success together

Ensure the Family and Community Learning service meets local priorities and is compliment with contractual and equality requirements.

  • Ensure the provision of FaCL programmes in identified high priority areas of need
  • Ensure that all learners have access to high quality provision and achieve well
  • Monitor performance and retention of learners

Our partners are key to our delivery and help widen participation. We value our excellent working together relationships. We know that we need to work with others to make sure we offer learning to as many Wiltshire people as possible. Here are some of our valued partners. Please get in touch with us if you would like us to engage with a group you know about. We would love to hear from you.

Further learning and next steps

Local colleges and training providers

New College 01793 611470 Courses for interest or to get a qualification in Swindon

Swindon College  0800 7312250 Courses for interest and to get a qualification

Wiltshire College 01225 350035 Courses for interest or to get a qualification at venues across Wiltshire

Improve English, maths & IT skills National course advice and information

Learning Curve  Adult learning and information about courses  01803 551 551

University of the Third Age  020 8466 6139 Learning co-operatives for people no longer in full-time employment

Workers Education Association Regional adult learning and leisure 0300 303 3464

Apprenticeships Visit the website to find out everything you need about apprenticeships locally

Volunteering Research volunteering opportunities in your area

Safeguarding and Prevent


Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and adults is everyone’s responsibility.

Accessing the right level of support early on. All children and young people deserve the best possible start in life. They need to be cared for, protected from harm and supported in their development. Sometimes a child or young person needs some extra support to reach their full potential. They are vulnerable due to their individual needs or pressures within their own family, peers and wider community. Sometimes parents realise there is a problem but struggle to know how to get help.

In Wiltshire, there are many services available to help meet children’s needs. Early help can provide support before difficulties reach crisis point.

If you think your child needs further support, talk to someone who works with them, maybe at School, the Health Visitor or Children’s Centre. They will discuss with you whether a referral should be made to a service that could help.

For further details visit:

If you think a child or young person is at risk of significant harm, neglect, or is injured, contact the Children’s Social Care Team on 01380 826200 (out of hours 0845 6070 888) or if there is immediate danger phone the police or emergency services on 999.

Wiltshire Safeguarding Children Board

Keeping your child safe PDF

The British values of:

  • Democracy
  • The rule of law
  • Individual liberty
  • Mutual respect
  • Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs

are actively promoted by Wiltshire Family and Community Learning.

All learners will have:

  • An understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process
  • An appreciation that living under the rule of law protects individual citizens and is essential for their wellbeing and safety
  • An understanding that the freedom to choose and hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law
  • An understanding of the importance of identifying and combating discrimination

Promoting fundamental British values as part of SMSC in schools


The aim of the Prevent strategy is to reduce the threat to the UK from terrorism by stopping people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.

The Prevent strategy addresses all forms of terrorism. The most significant threat is currently from terrorist organisations in Syria and Iraq and Al Qa’ida associated groups. But terrorists associated with the extreme right also pose a continued threat to our safety and security.

The Government remains absolutely committed to protecting freedom of speech in England and Wales. But preventing terrorism will mean challenging extremist ideas that are also part of a terrorist ideology.

The Government define ‘extremism’ as vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs. Also included in the definition of extremism are calls for death of members of our armed forces, whether in this country or overseas.

Channel forms a key part of the Prevent strategy. The process is a multi-agency approach to identify and provide support to individuals who are at risk of being drawn into terrorism.

Whilst the Channel provisions are counter-terrorism measures, the way in which Channel will be delivered may often overlap with the implementation of the wider safeguarding duty.

Channel is about ensuring that vulnerable children and adults of any faith, ethnicity or background receive support before their vulnerabilities are exploited by those that would want them to embrace terrorism, and before they become involved in criminal terrorist related activity.

It works best when the individuals and their families fully engage with the programme and are supported in a consistent manner.

The multi-agency involvement in the Channel process is essential to ensure that vulnerable individuals have access to a wide range of support. Information sharing is an essential part of the process to determine whether an individual requires support, and if so, what that should consist of.

There is no single way of identifying who is likely to be vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism. Factors that may have a bearing on someone becoming vulnerable may include: peer pressure, influence from other people or via the internet, bullying, crime against them or their involvement in crime, anti-social behaviour, family tensions, race/hate crime, lack of self-esteem or identity and personal or political grievances.

Early indicators may include:

  • Showing sympathy for extremist causes
  • Using insulting to derogatory names for another group
  • Increase in prejudice-related incidents committed by that person (assault, provocative behaviour, damage to property, refusal to cooperate etc.)
  • Communications with others that suggests identification with a group, cause or ideology
  • Glorifying violence or condoning or supporting violence towards others
  • Evidence of possessing illegal or extremist literature
  • Advocating messages similar to illegal organisations
  • Out of character changes in dress or personal appearance, behaviour and peer relationships
  • Loss of interest in friends and activities not associated with the extremist ideology, group or cause

For further information visit the Let’s Talk About it website

Participation in Channel is voluntary and requires consent to be given by the individual (or their parent/guardian in the case of a child) in advance of support measures being put in place. Where someone does not wish to continue with the process, it may be appropriate to provide alternative support through other mainstream services, such as Children or Adult Social Care Services.

More information on safeguarding children can be found in the:

Contact your local police force or dial 101 (the non-emergency number) for support and advice.

Concerns relating to extremism can be raised directly using the Department for Education dedicated helpline:

Telephone 020 7340 7264


*Please note that the helpline is not intended for use in emergency situations, such as a child being at immediate risk of harm or a security incident, in which case the normal emergency procedures should be followed.

For further information visit the Let’s Talk About it website

Online safety for children

  • Seeing or sharing of violent, sexual and pornographic content
  • Inaccurate or false information and extreme views
  • Promotion of harmful behaviours including self-harm, anorexia and suicide
  • Over-sharing of personal information
  • Actively or unintentionally getting involved in bullying or hurtful behaviour
  • People who might bully, intimidate or frighten
  • People posing behind fake profiles
  • Sexual grooming and stalking
  • Blackmail and extortion
  • Identity theft and hacking
  • Fear of missing out leading to excessive use or exaggeration
  • Getting upset by things they have seen and being uncertain about what to do
  • Engaging, or being pressured into engaging in risky behaviour
  • Developing unrealistic, and perhaps depressing ideals of body image and gender
  • Becoming subject to peer pressure or interactions that are intense or too difficult to handle
  • Creating an online reputation that may create problems for them in the future
  • Work through safety and privacy features on the apps. Make sure they understand the point of these and how to use them
  • Ask them to show you which social media apps they use and what they like about them. Talk about how they use them and what makes them so engaging
  • Explain how you can use privacy settings to make sure only approved friends can see posts and images.
  • Switch off devices that give a user’s location
  • Show how to report offensive comments or block people who upset them
  • Check ‘tagging’ settings so that when others are posting or sharing photos online, their identity is not revealed
  • Encourage them to talk to you if they see anything that upsets them

You can find out more about how children use social media, the apps they use, the risks they face, how to use privacy settings, and advice and tips about how to talk to your children at:

Concerned about online grooming or sexual behaviour online?

Contact CEOP

For further information visit the Let’s Talk About it website

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