Informed Scotland Dec 16/Jan 17 – New year, new challenges


Once again there was no lull over the festive season with 2017 continuing at pace, ready to throw everything at the learning & skills landscape. Words of the year are already emerging: ‘equity’, ‘learner journey’, ‘streamlining’, ‘quality’ – and ‘challenging’!

You could be forgiven for having a sense of déjà vu, with the National Improvement Framework for schools back on the cover, just as it was a year ago, though this time it’s the final version. A new Pupil Equity Fund was also launched to help schools close the gap between the most and least deprived young people.

There was the annual glut of statistical releases, with a few notable additions – the first Achievement of Curriculum for Excellence Levels from Scottish Government and the first college Student Satisfaction and Engagement Survey from Scottish Funding Council. Missing was the school leaver destinations report, with Skills Development Scotland instead planning to concentrate on the new Participation Measure of all 16–19 year-olds in learning, training or work each August.

The Scottish Government published its response to the Apprenticeships Levy, as new work-based Graduate Level Apprenticeships were announced by a number of universities. There was an updated Food & Drink Skills Investment Plan from SDS, the well-covered OECD PISA survey, IPPR Scotland’s paper on challenges for the skills system, and the annual High Fliers Research Graduate Market report.

While elsewhere the talk is of walls and borders… we can’t help but comment on the numerous examples of international collaboration in this edition, including the upbeat Scotland’s Universities Welcome the World campaign.

The fourth annual Informed Scotland Learning & Skills Hottest Topics list, plus a round-up of last year’s activity, is in an Annex. You can also listen to an interview on Radio EDUtalk, when Angela and David Noble explored the stories behind the list, and looked at what’s on the horizon for 2017. And look out for mention of a Leadership Special we’ve been commissioned to produce for Scottish College for Educational Leadership to support their conference in Perth on 3 May.

Become an Informed Scotland subscriber so you can keep on top of all the developments. Email [email protected] to request a sample copy.

Comments are closed.