Keills Primary receives Rights Respecting School – Silver Award!
On the 24th May, Keills Primary School underwent a Rights Respecting Schools Accreditation for the Silver Award. After almost 3 hours of the Argyll and Bute assessor, Christine Walker, asking questions to staff, parents and children about the teaching, learning and experiences within the school, she finally announced that we had indeed met the standard for UNICEF UK’s Rights Respecting School Award at Silver: Rights Aware. We were all delighted with this recognition – a massive achievement for our small school!
Over the last eighteen months everyone, staff and children, have worked so hard towards achieving the silver award. The process has focussed on teaching and learning about rights; teaching and learning through rights – developing our school ethos and relationships and, teaching and learning for rights – supporting and promoting child participation, empowerment and action. To be one of the fourteen schools within Argyll and Bute to have achieved Silver is certainly a credit to all within the school.
Special recognition for their efforts goes to our Steering group members – Kara, Ryan, Oonagh, Hamish, Erin, Willow, Robbie, and our additional volunteers – Ellie, Charlie, Keith, Caitlin, who spoke so confidently to Christine about the learning and events undertaken within the school and their personal thoughts and experiences. Afterwards some of the children shared their feelings. Robbie said, ‘I spoke to Christine Walker about our rights. I was a wee bit shy but afterwards I felt amazing.’ Charlie remarked, ‘I felt proud of what I’ve done.’ Hamish added, ‘I felt happy and excited.’ Willow stated she felt ‘amazing and proud’. Keith said, ‘I felt good when we got the Silver.’ While Caitlin announced, ‘I felt good. Then after I felt so amazing. Then when I heard we got Silver I wanted to scream with excitement!’ We were all very happy and delighted when the announcement was made.
We would also like to thank Alyson MacGillivray and Lorna McLellan, our Parent Council members who spoke to Christine at length about their thoughts about the school’s rights respecting journey.
In addition to this, we would also like to acknowledge our former pupils Clara and Scarlett who were in P.7 when we began our Rights Respecting journey. They played a key role in the Steering group and Pupil Council and set such a good example for others to follow.
Our next steps is of course aiming for the Gold Award, which is achieved when children’s rights are embedded throughout the school in polices, practice and the ethos. This is a long term process which will take approximately three years! It is however a journey we are committed to and are looking forward to undertaking!