Learn the essential foundations
for making books inclusive
Foundations for Inclusion
You understand that inclusion is important, and you're doing the best you can. You have some knowledge about how to make books inclusive and do so whenever you can, however, you know that there is more you could be doing.
You don't want to just tick boxes. You want to truly effect change but you know it takes more than just good intentions. You know that publishers are keen to work with those who understand inclusion, and you want to feel confident that you can offer them what they are looking for.
Maybe you've got some ideas of what you could be doing, or want to do, but you're worried about getting it wrong. You not only want to understand what goes into making truly inclusive books, but you also want to know how to apply this to the various types of projects you work on.
You are not alone. When I'm consulting on books there are pitfalls that come up again and again, and I find myself giving similar explanations not just about how to overcome them, but why this is important.
Transform good intentions into truly inclusive books
Foundations for Inclusion gives you exactly that: the essential knowledge and understanding of approach you need if you truly want to make books inclusive.
There's a different focus each week with activities to explore where you are and to help you apply what you've learned to current or recent projects, including prompts for working on your mindset around inclusion and inclusive books.
Regular group sessions will help you take what you are learning and make it work for you and the projects you're working on right now. The peer support from the rest of the group will help consolidate learning and drive you forwards.
"Beth's course has been transformative. For many years, I approached issues of Diversity and Inclusion with good intentions but little actual knowledge or confidence. The course has provided invaluable knowledge and insights into representing disability, diverse ethnicities, LGBTQ characters and families, accessibility and much more. I feel bolstered by this knowledge and inspired by the creative ideas that have been generated during the course. Highly recommended."
Kristen Harrison, Publisher
An 8 week programme to lay the essential foundations for inclusion
Each week for 8 weeks (not including a break over half term) you'll be given access to pre-recorded content discussing a particular topic or aspect to consider when making inclusive books. This will be accompanied by a PDF of the content, which will also include pointers to remember, implementation and mindset tasks and may also include suggestions for further reading or information.
Everyone enrolled will be invited to join a discussion space where you'll be encouraged to share your responses to the implementation and mindset tasks and support each other. The peer support on previous rounds has been phenomenal so engaging in the group is a big part of the experience. I'll also be responsive on any posts.
In addition to this, there will be an introductory group video call where you can all get to know each other, and 4 group video calls where I'll answer any questions and you'll have an opportunity to talk about a project you're working on get support to apply the learnings from the programme.
After the programme ends, those that have watched all the videos and engaged in the tasks will be invited to join an exclusive Alumni group where we discuss topics further, share useful information and wins, as well as work opportunities.
"The most useful and insightful training I've had in my [18 year] publishing career."
Cathy Atkinson, Freelance Publisher
"I can feel my mental attitude to inclusion changing – it's no longer a scary thing that I don't understand, so I passively avoid. Having this information from a clear source will give me the confidence to make changes and have fun doing it!"
Rose Parkin, Freelance Editor and Project Manager
Who is it for?
Foundations for Inclusion is for people who are self-employed in the publishing industry or children's book world (including editors, designers, authors and illustrators). The content was originally written with illustrated books in mind, but the learning can be applied to other children's book and educational products and the group sessions and peer support will help you do this. Teachers and tutors of children's writing and literature will also find the programme relevant, although the content is written from a book creation perspective.
"This course is a fantastic starting point to help anyone working in children's books start thinking about inclusivity. It's as useful for authors and illustrators as it is for editors and designers as well as those reviewing books. This isn't just about understanding how to make a book more inclusive, but also why it's so important - from accurate representation to good accessibility - because everyone should feel that books are for them. "
Lisa Davis, Freelance Children's Book Editor and Publishing Consultant
What's the investment?
Foundations for Inclusion is an investment that goes well beyond the programme. You will develop an understanding and awareness of issues regarding inclusion, and how to apply these to real projects, as well as pointers from each unit that you can use as guidelines on every project you work on in future. I'm also working with publishers who are keen to work with freelancers who have done my training, and refer projects to alumni of this programme.
"I would definitely recommend this course for anyone even thinking about wanting to make a difference in children's books and also publishing in general. The knowledge can be applied across the board - commissioning, writing, editing, illustration - and provides a solid base from which you can start important conversations and make practical changes."
Melanie Robinson, Freelance Editorial and Content Professional
What's the breakdown of the programme?
Introductory video call on Thursday 12th May.
8 pre-recorded videos of teaching content.
4 group video calls on Thursday 26th May, 16th June, 30th June and 14th July.
Discussion space for sharing responses and peer support.
Bonus videos on tactile books and moving forwards.
Will I receive any evidence I've completed the programme?
Participants who engage with the tasks and share their responses in the discussion space will receive a PDF certificate of completion and LinkedIn recommendation.
Can I expect responses to my posts in the discussion space?
I will aim to respond to posts within 24-72 hours, Monday-Thursday.
What time are the live group sessions?
The group sessions will take place on a Thursday usually from 12-1. Sessions times will be finalised at the start of the course and may vary if I have another commitment at the usual time or to accommodate different time zones.
What if I can't make a live group session?
All video sessions are hosted and recorded in Teams, where the recordings will also be available to rewatch. Please try your best to attend the introductory session live.
How long will I have access to the programme?
Your log in for the learning platform will be active for 1 year after the programme start date, so you can rewatch the content at any time during that period. Y0u will also be able to download the PDFs to keep.
I'm not a self-employed, how can I get this support?
If you are employed in the publishing industry, check out the Inclusion Incubator. If you are a very small independent publisher, please get in touch to discuss how I can best support you in laying the foundations for inclusion.
If your question hasn't been answered above, please get in touch.