Each year the Education Committee runs a selection of seminars and discussion evenings. In addition it supports the Public Speaking Competition for schools and an evening of presentations of new initiatives from members. The purpose of both types of event is to give Liverymen and Freemen a chance to hear about and discuss educational topics. The events are intended for anyone with an interest in education and are not intended for specialists in particular areas. There are some differences between the two types of event.
The Master's seminars form part of a coordinated themed programme looking at different aspects of a topic or looking at the theme in different parts of education. The tradition has been that the Master chooses both the theme and the speakers for the seminar programme although this is not essential. Planning for the seminar series starts in the January of each year with the aim that the programme can be announced in the autumn of the Master’s year. There may also be links to speakers at dinners and The Franklin lecture. The Master aims to chair each event if possible. The Education Secretaries help to find suitable people to invite for the audience and the series can be seen as an external facing series. In some years a record has been made of the seminars and their discussion and distributed via appropriate media. A small charge is made for refreshments. Copies of past and current lectures can be found on the Publications page.
The discussion evenings cover a variety of topics, many of which are suggested by individual Freemen. The meetings for the following year are discussed at the May meeting of the Committee and are arranged to fit in with the seminar programme. However, it is also possible to arrange a meeting on a key current topic at short notice. These meetings are chaired by the Chairman of Education Committee. The events can be seen as more inward looking although guests are welcome.
Attendance at a discussion evening or a seminar can be a good way to introduce potential new Freemen to the Company. A small charge is made for attendance to cover costs of refreshments. The evening of members’ initiatives is another type of discussion evening where four short talks on topics of interest are given.