I have provided links in this post to a series of Scottish Government documents that every parent in Scotland should read. They include the analysis of the responses to the Education Governance consultation, the summary of Excite.Ed findings on how to deliver excellence and equity in Scottish education, the Next Steps paper with the details of what the Scot Govt intends to do, the consultation paper on Fair Funding for education, and an independent research paper. There is a lot of reading here but it is worth the effort.
1. Delivering Excellence and Equity in Scot Ed – 00521039 (finding of the Excite.Ed consultation project)
2. f-global-dialogue-inside-out-and-downside-up-feb (Independent Research paper from 2016)
3. Education Governance – Fair Funding – June 2017 – 00521081 (Future funding)
4. Education Governance – Analysis of Consultation Responses June 2017 – 00521034 (analysis paper)
5. Ed Governance Next Steps – June 2017 – 00521038 (the most important one of all – the plans for putting right the mess Scottish Education is currently in)
I have extracted from the Next Steps paper the Scottish Govt timeline for the intended changes:
5.1 Delivering changes over the short, medium and longer term
We have set out a clear vision for education, one which is led by teachers and schools,
where collaboration is key to driving improvement, and where all children and young
people are able to reach their potential. In the previous chapters, we have set out a number
of actions which we believe are necessary to deliver this, and in practice, this will lead
to a number of changes for everyone involved in education. A number of these changes
will require legislative change. Whilst national Government has a role to play in directing
and supporting many of these changes, it is clear that collective and shared effort will be
required from all partners if the system is to be open, responsive and dynamic. However,
we are clear that this work must begin now.
In the short term, our focus will therefore be to engage with teachers and practitioners,
with parents, children and young people, and with all partners involved currently in the
delivery of education, to take these changes forward. Work will begin immediately to
ensure that enhanced improvement services are available to teachers and practitioners as
early as possible, and so that when the legislation and structural changes are in place, this
support is widely available to schools and functioning well.
Specific priorities in the short term will include:
- Commencing appointment in summer 2017 of a substantive Chief Executive in for a
strengthened Education Scotland, with the appointment of Regional Directors, to follow
- Working in partnership with local authorities and partners to develop the shape and
composition of the regional improvement collaboratives. We will ensure that the
experience of current and emerging partnership working informs the establishment of
regional improvement collaboratives.
- Strengthening of parental involvement and parental and community engagement,
consulting on legislative changes to strengthen, expand and improve the Scottish Schools
(Parental Involvement) Act 2006. We will consult on these changes as part of our
consultation on our Education Bill in autumn 2017.
- Strengthening parental and community engagement by working with the Scottish Parent
Teacher Council over the next year to learn from their Partnership Schools initiative to
ensure that schools support parents to play an active part in school improvement.
- Strengthening the voice of children and young people by supporting all schools to
promote and support pupil participation, consulting on a requirement that every school
pursues the key principles of pupil participation. This will be included in our consultation
on our Education Bill in autumn 2017.
- Consulting on an approach to fair funding, as set out in Education Governance – Fair
Funding to achieve Excellence and Equity in Education, published alongside this document.
- Developing the Headteachers’ charter and consulting on a proposed approach to the
legislation to underpin this, in time for the introduction of an Education Bill by June 2018.
- Beginning work from June 2017 on transferring relevant functions from national bodies,
ensuring that there is continued stability for schools, children and young people during
this period. This will include national support for professional learning and leadership
development which will become part of Education Scotland.
EMPOWERING OUR TEACHERS, PARENTS AND COMMUNITIES TO DELIVER EXCELLENCE AND EQUITY FOR OUR CHILDREN 43
- Establishing a Scottish Education Council by October 2017, chaired by the Deputy First
Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, to ensure a system-wide focus on
improvement can be delivered.
- Consulting on establishing an Education Workforce Council for Scotland which will take
on the responsibilities of the GTCS, the Community Learning and Development Standards
Council and register other education professionals. The full scope of the functions to be
undertaken by this body will be included in our consultation on our Education Bill in
- Working with the wider school workforce to introduce professional standards for these
staff. We will start this work from September 2017 onwards.
- Making clear our expectations by early autumn 2017 of the SQA, including the
importance of listening and being open to the voices of learners, teachers and parents.
We will ensure that the Chair regularly reports to Ministers on the improvements being
made in relation to these matters. We will request that SQA outline in their annual
corporate plan their strategic communications and engagement plans.
- Working with our partners, and particularly the profession, to establish new career
pathways for teachers allowing greater opportunities for development and progression
into leadership, specialist or improvement roles. We will start these discussions in
- Enhancing the leadership support package to build the capacity and culture for teachers
and headteachers to take on their new more empowered roles. This is an ongoing
commitment but one we will start working on from August 2017.
In the medium to longer term, we will embed these changes, ensuring that capacity is built
and developed across the system, to ensure schools and teachers are fully empowered to
take on their new role. Specific actions across the medium to longer term will include:
- Developing a specific recruitment campaign for headteachers building on the Teachers
make People campaign in spring 2018.
- Developing a mechanism by end of 2018 to identify aspirant headteachers early in their
career and develop a programme of professional learning and work experiences to lead
them to the Into Headship course – this will provide a fast-track leadership route for
talented teachers providing a clear pathway to headship.
- Developing by the end of 2018 new Executive Consultant Head and Cluster Leader roles
with partners to strengthen school leadership.
- Developing by the end of 2018 a new Systems Leadership role to provide clear progression
opportunities and to strengthen educational leadership at all levels in the system.
- Ensuring by 2019 that every school has access to a home to school link worker to
support parents and families who find it challenging to engage in their child’s learning
and feel excluded from the work and life of their child’s school.
- We will strengthen school, parental and community engagement by requiring from 2019
that every school has a teacher or professional who has responsibility for promoting
parental, family and community engagement.
- Working with Education Scotland and the Care Inspectorate to develop by the end of
2018 a single shared inspection model for early learning and childcare and a commitment
that each institution will only be subject to a single inspection per cycle.
- Developing an approach to funding that truly empowers schools, and provides the
framework of support which schools need, based on the outcome of the consultation.
We are launching our consultation on funding today and will set out our proposals by