What is the Children's University?

The Children's University is an international charity that provides all 7 to 14 year olds (and 5 to 6 year olds with their families) with access to exciting and innovative CU Learning Activities and experiences outside the normal school day.

Our work is developed and delivered through local CU Centres, situated across the United Kingdom and more recently overseas.

What is the cost of Child Membership?

With a Children's University membership children receive:

  • A CU Passport to Learning
  • Access to CU Learning Activities provided by CU quality assured Learning Destinations
  • Participation in a Children's University Graduation ceremony where they will receive a Children's University certificate, dressed traditionally in a graduation cap & gown, with an invitation to parents/carers to attend

Membership is renewed each time a new Passport to Learning is required (on average we find this is once every 18 months).

We recognise that for children from the lowest income families this amount could be prohibitive. In these circumstances, please speak to the school your child attends.

What is a CU Learning Destination and what kind of activities are CU Learning Activities?

CU Learning Destinations are places and organisations that provide high quality CU Learning Activities. CU Learning Activities are activities that have been quality approved by the Children's University. We validate any activity that will enable children or young people to develop skills or knowledge, as long as it relates to a subject that can be studied further in Higher Education.

A local CU Centre may offer art, astronomy or drama, music or maths, science or sport, philosophy, poetry or photography, or any combination of these and other subjects according to the expertise available locally.

Children's University learning provision can be in any subject which can be studied as part of a degree programme at a UK university, as exemplified onwww.ucas.ac.uk/students/coursesearch/.

Is participation recognised and rewarded?

Yes. We celebrate achievement and reward participation through the award of Children's University Certificates. Raising children's aspirations is important to us and we aim to develop the understanding that learning can be the 'satellite system to better places in life.'

What the benefits to my child?

Through participation in fun, high quality learning experiences, we aim to grow inquisitive, confident, independent children and learners. It's about enjoyment and a sense of achievement for all. Membership to the Children's University provides each child with access to a great range of quality assurance learning provision.

How many children do you work with?

In 2013 there were approximately 160,000 5-14 year old CU participants across the British Isles.

How can my child join Children’s University?

If your child is aged between 5 - 14 years old and their school is registered with Children’s University (CU), then they could become a member of Children’s University™.

Are you a charity?

Yes, Central CU Trust was granted charitable status on 20th January 2015. Our Registered Charity Number is 1160033.

When do the activities take place?

The validated activities take place out of school learning hours. For example, your child’s school may run a breakfast club or lunch time in which the CU hours of learning will be validated. Many afterschool activities been validated and will count towards achieving an award. There is also a number of CU Learning Destinations across the West Midlands which provide children with specific activities to do, each will have their opening times posted on their websites included in the activity packs which can be found via www.childrensuniversity.co.uk/maps/.

Which clubs or activities can I attend out of school hours?

You can find your local CU Learning Destinations on our website www.childrensuniversity.co.uk/maps/. Simply type in your postcode to find validated activities in your area.

How can I find out if my school is participating in CU?

You can either contact your school direct or give us a call on 0121 718 7081. We can advise you on whether your school is currently participating in the Children’s University programme and if not, how we can help get it set up.


My school isn't registered, can I still take part?

Unfortunately, at the moment, we are unable to offer Children's University to children independently from their school. This is currently being looked into.

What happens to the hours I have collected?

For every activity you complete, you will receive a stamp on your CU Passport to Learning or you can log your hours online and when you reach each target, you will be rewarded with a CU Certificate for your achievement.


What happens if I lose my CU Passport to Learning?

Speak to your CU Coordinator at school and they will arrange for you to purchase a new one. We suggest you keep a copy.

How does my school get involved?

Ask them to contact us and we will contact them directly.

What is a ‘Passport to Volunteering’?

A CU Passport to Volunteering is a log book for people who want to volunteer and help out at CU events and activities. When enough hours have been collected, you can also graduate along with the children who have completed their hours doing CU validated activities.

What kind of activities can I do?

All kinds! Check with your school to see what they offer and have a look at our Learning Destination pages to see what’s available in your area.

How much does it cost to take part in an activity?

Most activities are free but some have a small fee per child. Check with your activity provider.

Are your partner’s police checked?

The Children's University™ validation process of CU Learning Destinations assures the quality of learning. All matters of Health and Safety, Public Liability and Safeguarding remain the responsibility of the learning provider.

When is the Graduation Ceremony?

For each area, the CU Graduation Ceremony will take place at different times of the year. You may also be invited to small ceremonies in your school throughout the year!

Can I do the same activity more than once?

You can do activities as many times as you like but no more than 30 hours in any one school year for each activity will count towards the awards. This is because we want to encourage you to try as many different activities as possible.