Author Archives: Joan Esson

Challenge questions to support improvement⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

We have updated the Advice on Gaelic Education to reflect some recent changes to the 1+2 policy. This change enables children to continue with L3, as they move from primary to secondary, if schools are able to demonstrate that children’s achievements are “approaching the second level”.  We have included challenge questions, matched to the quality indicators, to support self-evaluation for self-improvement.

This section of the Advice is available here:

There is also an earlier blog entry which may be useful to read.

The 1+2 Leadership Programme⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

2 – 5 July 2018, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.

This national leadership programme is now open for registration.  It is hosted by SCILT and Education Scotland. The programme is aimed at those who have, or aspire to have, a responsibility for leading languages and developing colleagues’ capacity to deliver the 1+2 approach to languages in their context.  The programme is free of charge for educators in the public sector and begins with a summer school.

The programme themes include:

  • 1+2 languages: the national picture and the position of languages within the National Improvement Framework and the Scottish Attainment Challenge
  • Strategic leadership in languages: planning and evaluation
  • Progression in language learning
  • Parental and wider engagement in language learning
  • Raising attainment: practical ways to develop literacy skills across languages
  • L3 – existing models, diversity of languages
  • Inclusive practice in languages

More information

Conference for Gaelic Medium Education (GME)⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Flexible Approaches to Promoting and Delivering Gaelic across the Curriculum

Tuesday 27th February 2018 at Jury’s Hotel, Inverness

Bòrd na Gàidhlig are hosting a conference to support the delivery of GME at the secondary stages.   The agenda includes:

  • E-Sgoil sharing how digital technology may be used to deliver the curriculum
  • SQA providing an update on the qualifications that are available to support GME.

To register for the conference, please contact

Please search Gaelic on the National Improvement Hub for useful resources to support the development of the secondary GME curriculum.  These include:

Quality and Improvement in Scottish Education, 2012-2016 with chapter on GME and commentary

Statutory Guidance on Gaelic Education, 2017

Education Scotland Advice on Gaelic Medium Education at the Secondary Stages

Conference on Gaelic Education – Transitions to Secondary

e-Sgoil: A GME Curriculum Through Digital Technology

Advice on the Broad General Education

Advice on the Senior Phase and Beyond the Senior Phase


Higher Gaelic (Learners)⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

SQA has published details of changes to the arrangements for Higher Gaelic (Learners).  Units and unit assessments will be removed from session 2018-19 onwards.  SQA are strengthening the course assessment to ensure that it continues to assess candidates on the full content of the course, and to maintain the current course value of 24 SCQF credit points.  For more details, please visit:

Professional learning in leadership⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Newly-appointed headteachers can now apply to join Scottish College of Educational Leadership (SCEL)’s In Headship programme.  The In Headship programme encompasses the role of a headteacher as a strategic leader within, across and beyond the school community.  It is designed to facilitate and support head teachers in the transition through the early stages of headship, to enable them to develop as effective strategic leaders who contribute to system leadership. This programme aims to support the first phase of headship and develop an understanding of the Standard for Headship in practice. For more information and to apply, please visit: …

For details of other leadership developments for education practitioners at all levels, please visit:

Resources to support literacy – Scottish Book Trust⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Funding for author visits available through First Minister’s Reading Challenge

Over 50 schools around Scotland are enjoying inspirational author visits through the First Minister’s Reading Challenge Inspiring Classrooms fund. If successful, your school could receive a £500 grant to bring an author to your school. Please note: you must register for the Reading Challenge to be eligible to apply for this opportunity.

P1 teachers: we need your feedback

Win a reading tent, cushions and a bundle of books by telling us what you thought of this year’s Bookbug Primary 1 Family Bag. Fill out our survey by 31 January 2018 to be in with a chance of scooping this great prize.

Enter our 50 word fiction competition

Our flash fiction competition challenges you and your pupils to compose a story in 50 words or less. This month, we’re looking for stories featuring an old piano. Get your entries to us by 31 January 2017 for the chance to win exciting prizes and have your story featured on our website.

Gaelic Education Award/Duais Foghlam Gaidhlig⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

The Scottish Education Awards recognise early learning and childcare settings and schools that have developed a vibrant and progressive culture and climate of continuous innovation in relation to Gaelic Medium and Gaelic Learner Education. The culture and ethos should promote respect, ambition and achievement in Gaelic Education while improving outcomes for all learners in ways which eliminate inequity.

Do you know an early learning and childcare centre or school that can respond to the above statement? Then why not nominate them for the Gaelic Education Award?

Nominations close at 12 noon on Wednesday 14 February 2018


Deputy First Minister’s Maths Challenge: GME Version⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Tha Dùbhlan Matamataig an Leas Phrìomh Mhinisteir ri fhaighinn ann an Gàidhlig an seo:

Tha sinn an dòchas gun còrd e ruibh.

Deputy First Minister’s Maths Challenge is available through the medium of Gaelic:

Fun, festive activities to keep your child busy over the holidays!

Resources to support health and wellbeing in Gaelic Medium Education (GME)⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

The Safer Scotland Scottish Government website has resources to support children learning through the medium of Gaelic. These include interactive games and stories.  Please visit:

Road Safety – ‘Go Safe with Ziggy’ Competition

Ziggy’s BIG competition is about helping children learn about road safety in a fun, creative way.  This is part of a Scotland-wide movement to help young children be safe on roads and about traffic. The competition is open until the end of April 2018.


from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Education Scotland is evidencing many successes for Gaelic (Learners) from the implementation of the policy, Language Learning in Scotland: a 1+2 Approach. Teachers’ commitment to delivering Gaelic within the curriculum is acknowledged.  A presentation on the successes and challenges for Gaelic from implementing the policy is available here.  One such challenge is that there are many children learning Gaelic as L3 in primary schools for whom  a progression pathway into secondary is still to be identified.  However, a newly-announced change to how L3 may be delivered may assist with this.  In Scotland, we also have an important target to meet in increasing the number of speakers of Gaelic as part of the National Gaelic Language Plan.  For this, education has a key role.

Currently, at the primary stages, children who experience a coherent and progressive experience of L3 from P5-P7 may choose to continue with that language into S1 and to the end of the broad general education (BGE).  For purposes of planning the secondary curriculum, this language would become young people’s L2.  For this to be the case, children need to have achieved the second level by the end of P7.  In addition, there should be pathways to National Qualifications in the senior phase for that language.  The 1+2 policy has recently been relaxed to state that L3 may be the language that children continue with, as they move from primary to secondary, if schools are able to demonstrate that children’s achievements are “approaching the second level”.  To achieve this, the planning for the L3 language needs to result in a coherent and progressive experience from P5-P7.  This new arrangement does not replace the opportunity for schools to introduce more than one language as L3.

Here are some useful steps to guide how you may incorporate this new delivery model for L3 into planning for improvement:

  • Revisit your curriculum rationale, particularly in light of the local context, to ascertain if increasing the numbers approaching the second level of Gaelic (Learners) is a priority for your school.
  • Ensure strong links between primary and secondary specialists who are delivering Gaelic (Learners).
  • Work with the other primaries in your cluster and the associated secondary school to plan a coherent 3-18 experience.
  • Review the structure of the curriculum to see how you can plan learning, teaching and assessment to enable children’s achievements to be approaching the second level.
  • Review how well you use the contexts of the curriculum as a means of increasing outcomes for Gaelic and assisting young people in making connections in their learning.
  • Review how you are using Gaelic partners and organisations to increase the time allocated to Gaelic (Learners) in the curriculum.
  • Plan for progression and coherence by using the experiences and outcomes to show how you will develop knowledge, skills, attributes and capabilities of the four capacities.
  • Plan the use of Benchmarks for Gaelic (Learners) to set out clear statements about what learners need to know and be able to do to achieve a level across all curriculum areas.
  • Plan how you will integrate Gaelic (Learners) as a language in the life and work of the school.
  • Use the principles of curriculum design to plan learning to motivate children in their learning of Gaelic.  In particular, ensure that children understand the relevance of Gaelic, including for achieving a positive destination on leaving school.

For more information on the delivery of L3 in the 3-18 curriculum, please see Language Learning in Scotland: A 1+2 Approach – Further guidance on L3 within the 1+2 policy.  It is a matter for schools to determine the exact design of the curriculum, using the flexibility that Curriculum for Excellence affords them, to ensure that children’s achievements are “approaching a second level”.