1. Introduction And Background Of The Consultation
1.1 The Education (Scotland) Act 2016 ("the 2016 Act") was passed by the Scottish Parliament on 2 February 2016 and received Royal Assent on 8 March 2016.
1.2 This legislation is a key part of the Scottish Government's strategy to ensure that the life chances of our children and young people are improved and that our education system delivers excellence and equity. Building on a range of key policies and reform, the legislation aims to help deliver an education system which continually improves and which effectively closes the attainment gap in order to deliver both excellence and equity.
1.3 The consultation sought views on draft statutory guidance for Part 1 of the 2016 Act. The draft statutory guidance covers those provisions which make amendments to various sections of the Standards in Scotland's Schools etc. Act 2000 ("the 2000 Act"). The statutory guidance has been developed to support those who will have responsibility for various duties in relation to:
- reducing inequalities of outcomes for pupils experiencing them as a result of socio-economic disadvantage;
- the National Improvement Framework ( NIF), and;
- planning and reporting duties at school and education authority levels.
1.4 Chapter 1 of the draft statutory guidance provides more information on the context of the legislation and the guidance itself. Chapter 2 deals with the duties and steps that might be taken by education authorities to reduce inequalities of outcome for pupils experiencing them as a result of socio-economic disadvantage. Chapter 3 then sets out the duties and steps that might be taken by education authorities in pursuance of the NIF priorities. Finally, chapter 4 deals with the duties and steps that might be taken by education authorities in relation to their respective planning and reporting duties as to proposed steps/steps taken to reduce these inequalities.
1.5 The Scottish Government has worked closely with Education Scotland and external stakeholders to develop the draft statutory guidance. Representative bodies contributed to that process through a working group whose membership includes: the Association of Directors of Education in Scotland ( ADES); the Association of Headteachers and Deputes in Scotland ( AHDS); the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (Cosla); the Education Institute of Scotland ( EIS); the Improvement Service; the National Parent Forum of Scotland ( NPFS); the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives Scotland ( SOLACE), and; School Leaders Scotland ( SLS).
1.6. In order to progress drafting of the statutory guidance, the Scottish Government sought comments on certain matters as contained in the consultation document. The consultation was launched on 22 August 2016 and closed on 11 November 2016. 43 responses were received with a number of comments made on each of the 9 questions as detailed under Analysis of Responses to the Consultation Questions.
Email: Hazel Crawford