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Showing posts from March, 2018

Professional learning on a Saturday?

Last Saturday I had the pleasure of attending a professional learning event for teachers, provided by teachers. PedagooTweed was one of a series of events happening across Scotland, supported by Pedagoo, a self-created teacher support group, and SCEL (Scottish College for Educational Leadership). This is an interesting dynamic of the formal and informal  that exist in Scotland that aim to help teachers to learn and develop, by unleashing the power that resides in all of them. So on Saturday teachers and educators from across the south of Scotland met up in Peebles for professional learning and dialogue that was shaped completely by themselves, with no agendas set by others. Also, the mix of sessions were being led and facilitated by practitioners, who were willing to share insights and offer support. No-one had been bought in to deliver, and no-one was selling anything.

There were a mix of activities available. A sharing-table, where attendees put a book or resource that had particula…

Where next for Curriculum for Excellence?

Today, I took part in a seminar in Edinburgh which focused on Scotland's curriculum and the priorities for the new Education Bill currently being prepared for parliamentary approval by the Scottish Government. Entitled, 'Next steps for Curriculum for Excellence - supporting teachers, tackling the attainment gap and priorities for the Education Bill' it was held at the Royal Society Edinburgh, and featured a range of educational and political speakers, starting with Graham Donaldson as someone heavily involved at the outset of CfE and who is now helping to shape the new curriculum for Wales. Graham is also a member of the International Council of Education Advisors to the Scottish government.

He started the day with an overview of CfE as it was originally envisioned and proposed, as well as a consideration of where we were now at. He said that it had been acknowledged by the OECD, academics and other countries that the approach encapsulated in CfE was one that many sought t…

Speaking of ethics

'ethics: moral principles that govern a person's behaviour or the conduct of an activity'

I have been part of a couple of discussions around ethics over the last week. The first was as a result of the seminar I attended at Edinburgh university around the development of literacy in early learners, and the second was a chat with my daughter, who is an occupational therapist working with adults with severe dementia. Both these, got me thinking more about ethics in education, for teachers school leaders and system leaders. I have been involved in a few discussions with Suzanne Zeedyk of Dundee University around the issues and problems when teachers and school leaders act, or take decisions, in ways that they know may well be detrimental to some learners. I have always seen this as an issue around values, but actually it is more than that, because it comes down to working ethically, and in the best interests of all learners, all the time.

At the Edinburgh event a question had b…