What do others say about us?
Consecutive independent evaluations of the national Children's
University by Professor John MacBeath of the University of
Cambridge, in partnership with Fischer Family Trust, recognise that
'Children's University pupils attend better by virtue of the
activities which enhance their school experience … achieve better
by virtue of renewed self-confidence in their own potential … enjoy
learning more because they extend their repertoire of interests and
see learning in a new light.'
Since the establishment of the national Children's University in
2007, the very significant increase in numbers of local CU centres
and participating children shows that they do indeed attend.
Comments from parents and the children themselves, as well as
schools, show just how engaged and inspired they are.
Following the graduation at the University of Warwick, a
parent's email to Warwickshire's CU Manager is reproduced
"Children's University has been a fantastic experience for
all three of our children. They are, as you know, three very
different characters and Children's University has inspired and
challenged them all. The experience of Children's University has
been, for us, a wonderful learning experience, it has made learning
a reality beyond the academic studies and given the children a
positive outlook to learning and how "… boring …" skills can be
used in real life.
The children have enjoyed team work and friendship during
the exploration of different modules. They have tackled subjects
they thought they wouldn't be able to do and faced challenges that
took them beyond the comfort zone. But we believe that having taken
these challenges in safety and with all the fun of Children's
University partner events the children have grown in confidence.
Confidence that at age 15 saw David going off for a week's course
at Imperial College London to join over 200 young people to study
Maths and Science. He didn't know anyone but neither had he when
attending some Children's University events. It was just like
Children's University only bigger and longer.
Knowledge gained in a fun way at Children's University
events comes back in study. When looking at food chains in Science,
Richard had a light bulb moment: "But that's what we did when we
played that game at Ryton Pools…!"
Children's University has helped support our children's
learning and widen their world. I wish you all the best for the
future and hope that you will be able to support many more children
through the experience that is Children's University."
The children …
"The Children's University makes you want to go to school
more. The courses are fun courses ... and you get the
"I joined the computer club and practiced really hard. I got
better. We don't have a computer at home but I could take this one
home. It really helped me."
"I'm not so worried about putting my hand up or trying
things out in class because that's what you do in CU. Nobody puts
yo down for trying."
"I love learning new things."
"I am not afraid to try things out even if I get it
"I love the lectures!"
"Now I feel much more confident about the work in
"You don't have to be in school to learn."
"Even if I am not feeling very well I'll still come to
school because I don't want to miss Children's University after
"What we do in the Children's University means a lot to
"No one ever bullies you in the CU. It just wouldn't be what
CU is like."
"Going to university made me and my parents really
proud. Like seeing me in a cap and gown. My mum said she never
thought she would see inside a university. It just makes me feel
The parents …
"Children's Universityhas been a fantastic experience for
all three of our children. They are three very different characters
and Children's University has inspired and challenged them
"Children's University has helped support our children's
learning and widen their world. I wish you all the best for
the future and hope you will be able to support many more children
through the experience that is the Children's University."
"Congratulations on a job well done and I am happy to spout
off to all and sundry the benefit the Children's University brings
the children and our wider community."
The professionals …
"He's just a different person now; puts his hand up in
class, joins in, volunteers to help, brims with a confidence that
was never there before."
"I really want to take the attitude that success out of
school equals success in school. The Children's University has been
invaluable in raising standards across the school."
"Our data shows a direct correlation between success out of
the classroom and performance in school."
"The improvements in self-esteem as a result of Children's
University participation directly translate into improved
performances in the classroom."
"It is much more child-led; they are given a lot more
ownership of their own learning."
"It is the enthusiasm and delight youngsters get from doing
things and learning things they had not thought of before,
exploring new areas, new ways of learning."
"Watching the children and young people when we got to the
graduation made all the work worthwhile, it was absolutely
fantastic. You get such a buzz out of seeing the
difference it makes to so many of them."