Tag Archives: Broad General Education

Confident collaboration for improvement – the legacy of QuISE?⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

by Dr Bill Maxwell, HM Chief Inspector of Education

The publication of our report on Quality and improvement in Scottish education (QuISE), ranging back over the period 2012 to 2016, has been a great opportunity to take a step back from more immediate short-term concerns and take a ‘bigger picture’ view of what has been achieved over a period of major reform which has touched every area of Scottish education.

Having launched the report, I would now encourage each education setting to read their dedicated chapter and consider it in their self-evaluation.

Of course there is already good evidence around that, as result of the professionalism and expertise of staff and of course the efforts of learners themselves, outcomes have improved over that stretch of time. National Qualification outcomes have steadily improved and the proportion of young people entering a positive destination post-school now sits at a record high. Although there is still a long way to go, we have also seen evidence of progress in beginning to close the attainment gap between pupils from the most and the least disadvantaged backgrounds.

Equally, of course, not all in the statistical garden in rosy. We have also seen some unwelcome indications that we should be concerned about the pace of progress in literacy and numeracy through the broad general education, for example, and we saw a disappointing set of PISA results for 2015.

The QuISE report, offers a distinctly different, but complementary, perspective from that which you can get by simply looking at the statistics. It provides an analysis based on first-hand observation and evaluation of the quality what is actually happening in playrooms, classrooms, lecture rooms and other educational settings throughout the country. It summarises observation and evaluation undertaken by expert professionals, HM inspectors and indeed many other associates and lay members from education sectors across the country who join our inspection teams contributing a valuable additional perspective.

Our analysis of what has emerged from that more qualitative evidence base over the last four years has led us to conclude that there are some very positive and growing strengths in the provision and practice within Scottish education. These are strengths that align directly with the ambitions of Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) and other related reforms.

We are seeing improvement in the quality of learning experiences, with the result that young people are increasingly well motivated, engaged and actively involved in their learning. We are seeing schools and other education settings becoming more inclusive, we are seeing a broader range of achievements being promoted and recognised, and we are seeing the impact of strong leadership, with a clear and sustained focus on raising the quality of the day-to-day learning and teaching that learners experience.

The report also sets out a set of five priority areas. This is where we believe targeted improvements in practice and provision would reap dividends in enabling us to make further progress towards meeting our collective national ambition of achieving excellence with equity for all Scottish learners. They include: exploiting more fully the flexibility of CfE; improving assessment and personal support; enhancing partnerships; strengthening approaches to self-evaluation and improvement; and growing a culture of collaborative enquiry. In all cases these go with the flow of current reforms and national strategies and in each case there are already examples of excellent practice in the system.

Taking a longer view of what has been achieved over the last few years, and thinking about where we go next, has also had quite a personal dimension for me, as I retire from the role of Chief Executive of Education Scotland this Summer. As I prepare to move on, I am convinced that the Scottish education system is well placed to make substantial progress across each of these key areas.

If I were to pick out a linking theme it would be about collective commitment across all partners in the education system to work together, to help each other, and indeed to constructively challenge each other, in ways which provide richer, more coherent, more personalised learning pathways capable of matching the needs of all our learners. Confident collaboration for improvement rather than competitive isolation should be the Scottish way, reflecting our deep national commitment to a strong education as a common public good.

Taking account of the themes in this report, and with the National Improvement Framework providing a new level of clarity and focus from national to local level, I am confident that we can rise to the challenge that the OECD left us with following their 2015 review: to make sure we achieve the potential of a progressive programme of national educational reform, by taking bold and specific action to fully realise its benefits. I hope the QuISE report helps inform discussion and debate in education settings of all types, across the whole country, about where that specific action is needed and how boldness can be ensured as it is pursued.

 

On the Money: An interdisciplinary learning approach to financial education⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

‘On the Money’ is a collection of short stories, which are available through the medium of Gaelic, for use in the primary school. The aim of the stories is to help develop the financial capability of learners as part of their broad general education.

Access this learning resource here

Scot Pot – School Meal Product Development Competition⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Test your creativity and innovation skills!

The competition is open to all primary 5,6, and 7 pupils from schools across Scotland. Individual prizes will be given to the best entries, but all the pupils in the winning class will win an all-expenses paid trip to the Royal Highland Show 22nd – 25th June 2017. The winning product will be showcased at the ASSIST FM National Conference on 24th & 25th August 2017 in Glasgow.

The winning product will feature in schools across Scotland during Scottish School Meals week, 31st October 2017.

We are asking pupils to conduct their own market research to develop a new Scots Origin One Pot Dish that could be sold as a stand-alone product or be part of school meal that can be used in schools across Scotland.

The challenge is based on a similar format to the television programme ‘Dragons Den’. We would like pupils to put their creative and entrepreneurial skills to the test and design an innovative new ‘one pot’ product that:

  • They would like to eat and that could form part or all of a school meal for example; meal soup, meal pot, layered dish or something creative and innovative.
  • Has to contain AT LEAST ONE Scottish ingredient.
  • Would encourage more pupils to take school meals if it was sold in the dining area.
  • Could be promoted with an innovative advertising campaign that would include a name and a catch phrase to promote the product and fit with the Scots Origin branding.
  • Can be sold as a stand alone product.
  • Meets the nutritional guidance for a theme day in school.

To enter, please complete the attached entry forms and send to schools@sfdf.og.uk by 5th May 2017

Scot Pot Entry Form 2017

 

 

Financial Education Week⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Education Scotland and the Money Advice Service, in partnership with the Scottish Financial Capability Partnership (http://www.fincap.org.uk/scotland-forum) are running a Scottish Financial Education Week from 20-24 March which will see a series of events happening to promote money management for children, young people and young adults and to raise awareness of the importance of financial education both in schools and in the wider community.

The following are examples of what is taking place

Wednesday 22nd – Focus Group at Young Scot (Edinburgh) examining the development of financial capability with young apprentices.

Thursday 23rd – University of Edinburgh Business School is hosting a seminar and interactive webinar focusing on supporting and developing young adult financial capability.

https://www.business-school.ed.ac.uk/event/seminar-supporting-and-developing-young-adult-financial-capability

Thursday 23rd (evening) – Lloyds Money for Life workshop in Glasgow involving young people.

Friday 24th – Financial Education Conference at Murrayfield (Edinburgh) – aimed at teachers and local authority education workers. Sponsored by the Accountant in Bankruptcy and the Money Advice Service.   To register e-mail edscfe@educationscotland.gsi.gov.uk

Also, throughout the week there will be a series of consumer facing events run by Lloyds Money for Life programme, in partnership with Youth Scotland, where young people will be going out across Scotland to ask young people about their hopes and fears for their financial future

Financial Education Conference 2017 Workshops⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Finance Fairtrade Fortnight – St Catherine’s Primary School, Glasgow City Council

Jennifer Anderson PT and Claire Conlon PT will describe how the school’s themed finance fortnight addressed the priorities in the School Improvement Plan (SIP), such as improving learning in literacy, numeracy and social studies, embedding outdoor learning in the curriculum, making connections to global citizenship and developing a shared understanding around learning for sustainability. They will demonstrate how the ‘real life’ money activities they and their colleagues offered the children using support from the local community provided an increased focus on lifelong learning, made the young people aware of the links between economic wellbeing and health, improved staff understanding and knowledge of financial education within the curriculum areas of health and wellbeing (HWB), numeracy and social studies (SS), met the children’s needs via ‘going out to learn’/outdoor learning and supported the children regarding the ‘world of work’.   Jennifer and Claire will discuss the usefulness of ‘Money Mates’ in assessing the children’s learning over the fortnight and next steps.

Financial education and additional support needs – Cardinal Winning Secondary School, Glasgow City Council

Marie Inglis PT and Paula Elliot CT will demonstrate how ‘Money Week’, besides addressing financial education, provided a platform for the development of interdisciplinary learning (IDL) and the delivery of an exciting and challenging curriculum while developing the necessary skills for learning, life and work. Besides IDL, the other main themes developed were supporting the young people with everyday money management skills and self-evaluation. Marie and Paula will describe how the school’s aims of Money Week were met – developing IDL, promoting a sound savings ethos, raised awareness of ‘needs versus wants’, developing independence, a wider awareness of employment opportunities and links to managing money, awareness-raising of using money in a digital age and understanding ‘risks and rewards’. They will discuss how the themed event supported the development of employability and entrepreneurial skills.

Credit Unions, Money Week and more – Prestonfield Primary School, City of Edinburgh Council

Fiona Murray, Head teacher at Prestonfield PS, has organised and run several Money Weeks in recent years and following the Money Week in February 2016 she proposed the setting up of a school savings bank in partnership with Capital Credit Union. In this workshop she will share examples of interesting practice and the lessons learned from these themed inter-disciplinary weeks. She will explain how this has impacted the development of a high quality Financial Education programme in the school context and offer advice for delivering similar provision in other establishments. She will be assisted in this workshop by Kenny Ferguson who is the volunteer in school in charge of the CU Savings Bank.

Financial education and numeracy across learning – Knox Academy, East Lothian Council

Calum Blair who is a curriculum leader in Knox Academy will describe how as part of the school improvement plan they implemented and evaluated their money week. This focused on ‘numeracy across learning’, interdisciplinary learning (IDL) and the delivery of high quality learning and teaching opportunities with a focus on raising attainment. ‘Money Week’, besides raising an awareness of the issues underpinning financial education, provided an opportunity to make connections to support from the financial services sector and the wider community. Calum will talk about how the school are taking forward the lessons learned over the course of the week and through subsequent discussions with colleagues and members of the school management team.

Going out to Learn: real life financial education – Westercraigs Nursery School, Glasgow City Council

Lesley Morrison HT with a group of staff and young children will demonstrate the variety of fun, challenging and highly rewarding experiences the whole establishment enjoys while interacting with services out with the playroom – all on an almost daily basis. During this workshop the children will operate their real life fruit and veg shop and show how “pupil voice” informs how the profits they make from their business activities are researched, agreed and spent. The concept of fairness within a Curriculum for Excellence is included in a First Level outcome. Westercraigs children will offer their take on fairness and Fair Trade and demonstrate their ability and eagerness to meaningfully engage, with fairness in mind, in the life and work of their community at Early Level.

Financial Education: meeting challenges now and in the future – Money Advice Service

We know that the money experiences and learning children and young people have in their school years is important for managing money well later on.  Financial education is on the curriculum, yet there’s still too little evidence and research about how to deliver it effectively, and some children are still missing out.

This workshop will explore what MAS has found from extensive research into children’s and young people’s needs, why financial education matters so much, and what you can do to help improve it. It will provide insights into activities happening to understand more about ‘what works’, and an opportunity to consider the barriers to doing more of it – and solutions to overcoming them, including the chance to learn about a range of MAS tools and projects to support more evidence-based, effective financial education.

Progression in financial education, numeracy benchmarks – Education Scotland

Education Scotland published draft benchmarks for numeracy and mathematics in August 2016. There is currently an online consultation seeking practitioners’ views on these. Education Scotland is keen to consult with as many practitioners and partners as possible. Final Benchmarks will be published in June 2017. This workshop provides an opportunity for you to find out more about how the Benchmarks will be used to support professional judgement of achievement of a level in numeracy and mathematics. There will be an opportunity for professional discussion and for you to provide feedback on the Benchmarks related to Money and Number and number processes.

 

Credit Unions in Schools – Pioneer Credit Union

Beth Welsh, Business Development Manager and Amanda Gilmour, Project Co-ordinator for Pioneer Mutual Credit Union will talk about how they are engaging with schools across East Renfrewshire as part of the Scottish Government’s Junior Savers Scheme Fund. The project aims to encourage positive financial habits from a young age, and Pioneer Mutual are working with both primary schools and secondary schools.  In order to achieve this we have developed a series of financial education workshops, covering topics including credit scores and real life budgeting. The workshops focus on ensuring that participants gain an understanding of money and budgeting the digital world. We are working with Wildhearts to enable all the schools involved in our partnership project participate in their Micro-Tyco challenge; as we believe that the savings and ethical finance practices the Credit Union promotes works hand in hand with the entrepreneurial skills learnt through the challenge.

Prison Education: A Hard Cell! – Scottish Prison Service

The prison population in Scotland is comprised of a disparate mix of prisoners with complex problems and backgrounds. This workshop will provide an overview of how the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) in partnership with their two college education providers help tackle such issues through encouraging participation in learning. The workshop will be led by Jim King Head of Learning & Skills for SPS with support from Fife college and New College Lanarkshire. This will include examples of innovative case studies to demonstrate the complexity of issues facing the prison population and the ways in which our education providers promote the benefits of financial education for prisoners.

 

 

Financial Education – Engaging with the wider community⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

In order to become more financially capable it is essential that young people understand the wider business, economic and financial world in which we all live.  Schools linking with a wide range of organisations, businesses and agencies can help make financial education much more relevant and engaging.  Making these connections can of course contribute to a wide range of curricular areas.

A really good example of this is taking young people to the Museum on the Mound in Edinburgh.

You get to see lots of money and the money that’s been used hundreds of years ago and how it was first made and what it was made of.

P5 Pupil

As well as learning about money, our young people get a great insight into the world of work. Obviously, two-fold in this case because they were in a museum, meeting the curator and learning about what a curator does and going around the museum itself and also the world of banking and the activities that happen in banking, even today.

Class teacher

Money as an industry in its own right, what a lot of people don’t always realise is the number of artists and craftsmen, printers that are involved in making what you get out of the hole in the wall or get back as change from a till.

Curator Museum on the Mound

In North Ayrshire the Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) has partnered a local primary school to support the development of financial education.  This has involved using a resource called Skills 4 Bills.  Around ten members of staff from AiB took an afternoon away from their workplace to deliver this exciting simulation/game.  The purpose is to give an insight to financial management and the consequences people face should they find themselves in unsustainable debt.

During the game young people are given a different job or profession with its corresponding salary or wage.   Tax is then deducted before the young people choose their lifestyle options including their mode of transport, accommodation and holidays.  The game introduces young people to the swings and roundabouts of everyday life, some receiving bonuses while some suffer unexpected expenses.  At the end of round 1 in the game they review their results and then visit all the stations a second time before finding out whether or not they are in debt.

At the end of the simulation the young people worked with the AiB staff members to discuss what lessons have been learned and how they could avoid debt in their adult lives.

‘I learned that you should be careful when buying and you should only buy stuff that you need so you won’t go into debt’ P6 pupil

The young people were absolutely engaged in the activities and had lots of questions for the team from AiB that showed how much they had learned during the afternoon.

‘I think that the different options available to children gave them a taste of real-life contexts for finances.’ P7 teacher

Recently many more Credit Unions have become involved in schools in setting up Junior Savers schemes and delivering lessons in schools. For example Pioneer Mutual in East Renfrewshire are working with both primary schools and secondary schools delivering a series of financial education workshops, covering topics such as credit scores and real life budgeting.

There are a number of organisations that visit schools to enhance their provision around financial education particularly in secondary schools. Included in this are the Financial Education Partnership and the Stewart Ivory Financial Education Trust. Employees from the Royal Bank of Scotland also go into schools to deliver their very well received MoneySense workshops. They currently have 823 employees signed up in Scotland to deliver financial education sessions and have 1,011 schools across the country registered to use these resources.

Many of these interventions tend to be more successful when they are aligned with preparing young people for the world of work and for further and higher education.

Money and storytelling – powerful messages⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

One of the most inspirational ways that financial education has been delivered is through ‘stories’. In primary schools for example the use of the ‘On the Money’ short stories has been particularly successful and this was brought about by a partnership between Standard Life, Scottish Book Trust and Education Scotland .  The four stories were written by successful authors and covered a wide range of themes and contexts.

‘Funny Money’ written by Alison Prince focuses on:

  • Overspending and high levels of personal debt
  • Abstract nature of money
  • Attitudes and behaviours towards money

Nicola Morgan wrote ‘Charlie Fly and the Nice Dream’ which highlighted issues around:

  • Pocket money
  • Needs versus wants
  • Entrepreneurial and enterprising behaviour

‘No Change’ was written by Jonathan Meres and this short story looked at:

  • Family relationships
  • Marketing
  • Brand labels and peer pressure

Theresa Breslin’s contribution was ‘Down the Pan’. This short story focused on:

  • The divide between rich and poor
  • Global citizenship
  • Fundraising and charity

Engaging with these stories has helped young people tackle some very big issues, developing their own ideas as part of the process. For example young people in a Glasgow  primary school read ‘Down the Pan’ as part of their work during ‘Fairtrade’ week.

The follow up to ‘On the Money’ was produced in partnership between the Scottish Government, Scottish Book Trust and Education Scotland. It was a graphic novel entitled ‘Skint!’  This was a much ‘grittier’ resource aimed at young people aged 16-26.  It contains two illustrated stories that explore issues around attitudes and behaviours towards money management.  They were produced to engage reluctant readers and focused on realistic financial circumstances.

This book has been very well used in a number of different contexts particularly in community learning and development as well as schools and colleges.  As with ‘On the Money’ young people have engaged with the stories and the characters and these have provided memorable, enjoyable experiences and powerful messages for learners.   In particular there was a great deal of discussion amongst the learners about the characters and why they did certain things.  Many young people also face the issues that are discussed in the book and this makes it even more relevant for them.  The biggest issues that have arisen are:

  • Spending too much in teenage years and early twenties
  • Payday lenders
  • Buying on credit
  • Student debt

Many of these issues are discussed in the Money Advice Service report , It’s time to talk:young people and money regrets.

Money in a digital age⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

Teachers can put digital technologies at the heart of great learning in financial education by using a variety of software applications to

  • Keep financial records
  • Analyse information
  • Assess value for money
  • Prepare and use budgets
  • Make informed financial decisions
  • Simulate real life scenarios
  • Find specialist advice and information
  • Communicate with advisors and specialists

In an ‘enterprise context’ a number of schools have used and encouraged their young people to manage the finances of their healthy eating tuck shops by using ‘Excel’ on Glow.    A Fife school has used the software to manage cash flow, stock control and profit calculations.

At a personal level this can be exemplified by using a resource such as Money Talks, Family Finances which examines the inter-related finances of an extended family.   The on-line bank statements are based on ‘Excel Spreadsheets’ and young people can see  how changes in expenditure and income affect the end of month balance.  Items of expenditure can be more deeply researched using the Internet to compare best value for a range of goods and services.  This  links closely to the use of loyalty cards and text alerts which a number of banks and supermarkets use to keep customers informed of additional services being offered.  Other online services and technologies that young people should be aware of are

    • Paypal
    • Contactless technologies
    • Foreign currency conversion tables
    • Peer to peer lending
    • Crowd source funding and financing
    • Just giving – online support for charities
    • Paying or donating by text messaging – many organisations use this for television charity appeals.
    • Transport apps – Lothian buses is good example.
    • Wearable technologies

Government agencies also encourage the use of digital technologies for claiming benefits and the payment of taxes such as the ‘Vehicle or Road Tax’.

There are a range of potential risks to the use of digital that need to be recognised. In particular young people should be given the opportunity to discuss

  • Gambling apps
  • Pay day lending
  • Illegal streaming of videos and music
  • Digital security and keeping money safe
  • ‘Phishing scams’ involving email
  • Identity theft
  • Recognising secure sites

One of the main areas of risk is around the abstract nature of money and this may be an issue given that children and young people have access to mobile technology at a very early age.

 

Tackling Sectarianism Resources⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

The Scottish Government and  Education Scotland are hosting the launch of a free suite of anti-sectarianism learning and teaching resources for children and young people. The launch will be opened by the Scottish Government Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, Annabelle Ewing, in Stirling on the 22 Febuary 2017. Throughout the day detailed information about these resources and how they can be best deployed will be presented by a range of education practitioners. There will also be opportunities for you to explore the resources. Reserve your place.

Mission to Mars iPad Event⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

missiontomars

Mission to Mars is an inspiring, one-day, iPad event for schools and school leaders to provide excellent CPD and practical ways to take teaching and learning forward with iPad. The event will showcase the latest and most exciting tools for schools.

Glasgow 08.03.17

Edinburgh 31.01.17

This event will be a chance for schools to be inspired with ideas and hands-on experience of innovative and powerful ways to enhance teaching and learning for the students of today’s technological world.

This event is suitable for school teachers and leaders from both primary and secondary stages and across all subjects. It is suitable for schools at all stages of their iPad journey.

Workshop type – Keynote & practical, hands-on activities

Click here to book:  http://mars.xma.co.uk/index.php

Tweet about this event! #M2M