This is why I am back to blogging. I have been accepted to study on the SCEL Fellowship Programme for the next 11 months. I’m NOT leaving Prestonpans Infant School. I’ve been there for 3.5 years now and am really enjoying working in a great community with early years children and families and a tremendous staff team. This study opportunity is over and above the day job. Having loved the stimulation and intellectual rigour of SQH, I am very excited to be returning to study around an issue I have always been passionate about – nowadays it’s known as SOCIAL JUSTICE.
The area of study I choose has to be negotiated with East Lothian Council to reflect their priorities. So within the broad parameters of my Social Justice interests and East Lothian Council Integrated Children’s Services priorities, we have agreed on this area of study….
Which early learning approaches and policies enable Scotland’s practitioners and families to close the attainment and achievement gap for Early Level (3-5yrs) pupils at risk of failing to learn?
The programme starts on 20/21 March 2015 but my thinking started probably in 1972, aged 15, when I began volunteering at a local children’s home so it’s been brewing a long time. The Scottish Government have made Equality and the closing of the Poverty Attainment Gap an increasing priority over the last 5 years or so, but particularly recently with the recently announced Scottish Attainment Challenge. They have also focussed on the importance of Scotland’s Children having the ‘best start in life’ through their initiative, the Early Years Collaborative, which adopts improvement science methodology to improve outcomes. This year, the Scottish Government has increased funding to give 600 hrs of Early Learning and Childcare to all 3 and 4 year olds and to some 2 year olds. So there’s plenty to consider and the main task I am faced with now is limiting all the factors and issues to a few key areas of investigation. Watch this space…