Central Children's University (CU Trust)

"Children can only aspire to what they know exists ...!"

Children and young people aged 5 – 14 years old become members of Children’s University™, an (inter)national initiative which focuses on creating an excitement about learning through innovative learning activities and experiences outside normal school hours. We reward their participation in voluntary learning activities that will develop their skills and raise aspirations for the future.

It is also about developing the recognition that learning – any time, any place, anywhere – can be a personalised satellite navigation system to better places and that it should be fun!

Children’s University is on the cusp of transitioning into one of the largest out-of-school-hours and informal learning initiatives.

In this area, the Children's University Centres in Coventry, Birmingham, Solihull, Warwickshire and Worcestershire are all working together. The aim is to create a regional CU Centre of excellence which will ultimately lead to an increase in the number and variety of opportunities for local children.

This interim website will shortly be replaced with the new main site including individualised websites for each of the CU Centres listed above.

"University of fun, a brilliant way to get children inspired.", The Sunday Times

ePassport to Learning
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Children & Young People

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"Try something new!"

You will have your own personalised Passport to Learning in which you can collect hours of learning towards lots of awards. Your hours can be collected by taking part in extracurricular activities on offer at both your school or away from school clubs, societies, Scouting   Guiding groups and by visiting special places of learning at weekends or during your school holidays. The activities have to have been validated by Children’s University. These venues are called Learning Destinations and can be found both locally and nationally.

Your awards (certain levels) will be presented to you at a Children’s University Graduation Ceremony at a local University or other HE/FE institution where you can show off your achievements to your friends, family and teachers.

This is all included in the cost of your 'Child Membership' of just £5. However, please note that you can only join Children's University if your school is registered.

You will learn lots of exciting and fun things on your journey with Children’s University and maybe it will lead you to finding a new future hobby or career path.


Check out the current list of Learning Destinations on the national Children’s University™ website: childrensuniversity.co.uk


Contact us about possible new venues who could be approached to become a Children’s University Learning Destination

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Schools & Academies

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Join the 50 + Primary, Secondary, Infant, Junior and Special Schools and Academies currently registered with Children’s University locally to experience the following …

“Children’s University pupils attend better by virtue of the activities which enhance their school experience …achieve better by virtue renewed self-confidence in their own potential… enjoy learning more because they extend their repertoire of interests and see learning in a new light.”
(2010) - Independent evaluation by Professor John MacBeath of the University of Cambridge.

  • Brings coherence to an enrichment programme and allows close tracking of uptake and impact of participation
  • Provides instant reporting methods with the CU E-Passport (school management system) to meet all current OFSTED and internal requirements
  • Minimum paperwork for the CU Coordinator(s) in school
  • Useful tool to target the vulnerable groups of children including under-achieving/confident, looked after, traveller and more able pupils
  • Supports exciting opportunities for transition
  • Provides a framework for community engagement

Your extra curricular activities (which meet the Children's University criteria) that are already on offer can be validated by Children's University. New opportunities can also be validated and your pupils can collect their stamps of learning locally. There are also nationally registered Learning Destinations.

Although open to all, the Children's University aims particularly to reach children and young people facing socio-economic and educational disadvantage.

For more information and costs involved please click here.

We can put you in touch with currently registered similar schools to hear how they launched CU, what benefits they have experienced and how much time is required.


CU Evaluation Executive Summary 2013

Achievements and Developments 2014-2015

"Children’s University is the spark that awakens our children to the possibility of achieving great things.”

"Wanted - Space Cadets for the future" click here

"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."

Schools and Academies
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Parents & Carers

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We aim to grow inquisitive, confident, independent children and learners. Children’s University is about enjoyment and a sense of achievement for all.

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™. Armed with their CU Passport to Learning it enables them to look for their learning in extracurricular activities and experiences in places we call Learning Destinations. Please see the Learning Destination section for more information and visit the national CU website www.childrensunviersity.co.uk for a full list of validated venues and activities both locally and nationally.

For every hour children and young people take part they are working towards National Children’s University™ Awards. Certain levels are presented at a CU Graduation Ceremony at a local University or FE Institution. They are invited to receive their award dressed in a mortar board and gown with proud parents/carers watching.

If your child’s school is not involved with our initiative, please click here to send us a referral with the person to contact at the school.

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Learning Destinations

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Learning Destinations are places and organisations to which children and young people can 'travel' with their Passport to Learning.

For a list of the public Learning Destinations please click here to visit the national CU Trust website or contact us.

They provide high quality learning activities and experiences with a 'wow' factor and have passed the Children's University's own validation process (Planning for Learning). A Learning Destination can range from a museum to a farm or from an airport to a university as long as the learning activity connects with Children's University learning which is linked to actual university course provision as exemplified on www.ucas.ac.uk/students/coursesearch/

The status as a CU validated Learning Destination will in principle last for 3 years and is as such a licence agreement between the Children's University and the individual Learning Destination.

Learning Destinations display the CU's Learning Destination logo prominently in and outside their environment, clearly visible to children who may want to use their Passport To Learning there. Learning Destinations are also strongly encouraged to include the Learning Destination logo on literature, letter headed paper and to have a web link to the Children's University™ website.

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Contact Us

For more information or if you have any questions or queries please contact us using the details below.

Carolyn Lloyd - Children's University Strategic Manager

07983 987 541 0121 718 7081 carolyn_childrensuniversity

Kim Bagley – Children's University Administrator

07584 457 820 0121 718 7081 kim_childrensuniversity


Central Children's University
c/o Zellig 202, The Custard Factory
Gibb Street,
Birmingham, B9 4AU

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