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New attainment tools for teachers

Published: 11 Jan 2017 09:30

Evidence-based interventions to drive improvement.

New tools to help teachers drive up pupil attainment are being provided to schools across Scotland.

It comes ahead of the launch of the Scottish Government’s new £120 million Pupil Equity Fund, which is aimed at closing the gap between the least and most deprived young people.

The scheme will give schools around £1,200 for each pupil from P1 to S3 known to be eligible for free school meals.

A suite of information about the most successful approaches and interventions, based on practice examples from around Scotland and the best available international evidence, is being made available on the Education Scotland website.

Speaking on a visit to Inzievar Primary School in Fife, Deputy First Minister John Swinney said:

“This government is firmly committed to creating a world-class education system that helps all of our children to succeed.

“To help achieve this, we are investing an extra £750 million over the next five years to close the attainment gap – including £120 million Pupil Equity Funding that will go directly to schools.

“Clearly, we want this funding to maximise the chances of each and every young person. It is therefore imperative that we have an evidence-based approach to driving improvement, based on what we know will work. Indeed, this was a key recommendation of the OECD’s independent review of Scottish education.

“The information now available gives teachers and school leaders access to effective interventions based on practice examples from around Scotland. This suite of materials will be developed further in the coming weeks and months to include successful approaches based on the best available international evidence as we work with the Education Endowment Foundation to develop a Scottish specific version of their highly-regarded Teaching and Learning toolkit.”

Inzievar Primary School head teacher Jane Gray said:

“We know that in order to do anything to close the attainment gap, we must first have the children in the school and ready to learn. Our walking bus has been up and running since October and is helping us tackle low attendance and problems with lateness. By week two all of the targeted children were on the bus every morning and getting to school on time, and we have found that there are many, many more advantages.

“For example, children who are late most mornings are now in class on time and so their teaching doesn’t have to be repeated for the latecomer and time in class can be better spent on teaching and learning. The conversations which are being had en route are also proving hugely valuable as they inform staff about children’s moods, whether or not they have had breakfast and just how ready they are for learning. It has allowed us to identify early, any issues which may be brewing and can be dealt with before class starts.”

Dr. Bill Maxwell, Chief Executive of Education Scotland said:

“This new digital resource has been developed to help schools and their partners as they make local decisions about how best to go about closing the attainment gap between their most and least disadvantaged children.

“The interventions highlighted in this resource represent the wide range of different approaches which have been developed in Scotland, and which have proved to be effective. Education Scotland has a key role in ensuring that schools have easy access to evidence about ‘what works’ as they plan to address the priorities of the Scottish Attainment Challenge and the National Improvement Framework. With that in mind, we look forward to developing this resource further and working in collaboration with the Education Endowment Foundation in the years ahead.”

Background

Interventions for Equity is available from: https://education.gov.scot/improvement/Pages/Interventions-for-Equity.aspx   

The suite of materials will be developed further in the coming weeks and months as the Scottish Government works with the Education Endowment Foundation to develop a Scottish specific version of their highly-regarded Teaching and Learning toolkit.

Further material to support schools in the use of Scottish Attainment Challenge- Pupil Equity Funding (PEF) is available from: https://education.gov.scot/improvement/interventions-for-equity-a-framework-to-support-pupil-equity-funding