All posts by Joan Esson

Consultation on Gaelic sector

The General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTC Scotland) is conducting a consultation to seek views on how to increase impact in the Gaelic sector. The consultation has a specific focus on the recruitment and retention of teachers of Gaidhlig, Gaelic (Learners) and those who teach a subject through the medium of Gaelic. GTC Scotland are also seeking views on improving teacher education for the Gaelic sector.

This consultation is a result of a seminar chaired by John Swinney, Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills. At this seminar, GTC Scotland and the Scottish Funding Council were asked to identify ways in which the recruitment, retention and training of teachers for the Gaelic sector could be improved. Four other Gaelic networks were charged with looking at digital learning and the senior phase curriculum, the economy and labour market, community connections, and encouraging greater confidence in the use of the Gaelic language.

Please send your responses to the consultation to gtcs.org.uk

For more information on the consultation, please visit <http://www.gtcs.org.uk/News/teaching-scotland/76-gaelic-education-your-ideas-wanted.aspx>

This link also has a useful summary of some of the developments already happening, which may act as a stimulus for the consultation.

Also to note is the consultation on the Memorandum on Entry Requirements for Initial Teacher Education Programmes in Scotland (the Memorandum).

For more information, please visit <http://www.gtcs.org.uk/News/news/literature-review-teacher-education-entry-requirements.aspx>

The consultation closes on 21 December 2018.

 

Role of mentoring in languages

Researchers at the University of Cardiff have published a report on an initiative encouraging students to take up modern languages. It considers the role that mentoring, and in particular online mentoring, can have in addressing the decline in modern foreign languages  learning at GCSE level in Wales.

Comann nam Pàrant newsletter

Comann nam Pàrant, the national organisation that advises and supports parents/carers of those in Gaelic Medium Education (GME), have published their latest newsletter.

The newsletter provides a useful update, including:

  • Learning together, 2018 – 2021: Scotland’s national action plan on parental involvement, parental engagement, family learning and learning at home.
  • A new foundation apprenticeship through the medium of Gaelic entitled, Social Services: Children and Young People
  • National standardised assessments for Gaelic Medium Education(GME): Measaidhean Coitcheann Nàiseanta Gàidhlig (MCNG).
  • Expansion of GME in local authorities.
  • Comann nam Pàrant’s offer of a school trip to support the development of language skills
  • New television programmes for children to support Gaelic language learning

Please continue to read

Language Trends in Scotland

SCILT publish an annual analysis of published SQA statistics on language trends in Scottish schools.

For access to Trends from previous years, please contact SCILT.

Choices young people make regarding STEM and language subjects in school

  • Girls were more likely than boys to report choosing or intending to study a language other than English.
  • Young people from rural areas were significantly more likely than those from urban areas to report that they had chosen or intended to study a language subject.
  • The percentage of young people reporting that they had chosen or were intending to study a language decreased between S1 and S5. However, this number increases again in S6.
  • The most common reason for choosing to study a language was because the young person enjoyed it.

Highlights from the Young People in Scotland Survey, carried out by Ipsos MORI and published in March 2018. Find out more in the extract of these findings.

Attitudes towards language learning in schools in Scotland

  • Most people in Scotland (89%) think that learning a language other than English in school from the age of five is important. This was regardless of people’s age, educational qualifications, or socio-economic status.
  • The most common languages that people in Scotland think are appropriate for children in their area to learn are Western European languages.

Highlights from the Scottish Social Attitudes survey, carried out by Scotcen Social Research and published in February 2016.  Find out more in the extract of these findings.

Entries and awards for national qualifications in languages

Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) is the national accreditation and awarding body in Scotland. For the most recent data on all qualifications and subjects, including data on entries and awards for qualifications in languages, please refer to the following on the SQA website:

Language teaching

For information on how many Secondary specialist language teachers there are in Scotland, please refer to the data from the Summary Statistics for Schools in Scotland No 8 (Scottish Government, December 2017):

Languages in the community

Data from the Summary Statistics for Schools in Scotland No 8 (Scottish Government, December 2017) indicate the top 5 home languages in 2017, other than English, were Polish, Urdu, Scots, Punjabi and Arabic. A total of 158 languages were spoken as the main home language by pupils in publicly funded schools in Scotland. 53,052 pupils were identified whose main home language was neither English, Gaelic, Scots, Doric nor Sign Language. The greatest number of these pupils attend schools in Glasgow.

The statistics published by the Registrar General for Scotland on the Scotland’s Census website, present details from the 2011 Census in Scotland on Ethnicity, Identity, Language and Religion, from national to local level.

Navigate to the Standard Outputs menu and select ‘Ethnicity, Identity, Language and Religion’ to access the following tables:

  • Gaelic language skills by sex by age
  • English language skills by sex by age
  • Language other than English used at home by sex by age

Related Links:

New video on Gaelic Medium Education (GME)

Press Release from The Highland Council

The Highland Council is to launch a new video this week “Educational Growth” aimed at parents who are thinking of enrolling their children in Gaelic Medium Education.  The video features a range of different people who explain the benefits of Gaelic Medium Education and of being bilingual.

Professor Antonella Sorace from the University of Edinburgh gives an insight into how young children can pick up languages quickly and the skills a person can gain from learning more than one language.

The video also features the experiences of parents who enrolled their children into Gaelic education without speaking the language themselves. It answers fears and questions parents may have about the opportunity, such as how they are able to help with homework and how they can still feel very much included in their child’s education.

Musicians also feature in the video, such as singer-songwriter Robert Robertson and member of the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Chad Smith, who discuss the benefits of Gaelic education and the effects it has on a child’s future growth.

The video was created to demonstrate to parents how enriching, inclusive and unique Gaelic Education can be and to encourage them to take advantage of Gaelic Medium opportunities.

Councillor Alister Mackinnon, Chair of the Highland Council’s Gaelic Strategy and Implementation Group, said: “This is an excellent video which explains simply and clearly the many benefits of learning more than one language. It shows parents how engaging this type of education can be and how it can provide their child with skills they may not be able to develop elsewhere.”

The video was created by the Council’s Gaelic Team and was funded by the Scottish Government. The Team worked with editor, Donald Ewen who has a key role in the Gaelic soap ‘Bannan’.

The video was previously well-received when it previewed at An t-Alltan, the annual Gaelic Teachers conference and also when it previewed at Highland Council’s Care, Learning and Housing Committee.

The video can be viewed on the Council’s YouTube site from Thursday 8 November onwards at https://www.youtube.com/user/TheHighlandCouncil (external link)

Buannachdan dà-chànanais gan comharrachadh ann am bhidio ùr

Tha Comhairle na Gàidhealtachd a’ cur bhidio ùr ‘Fàs Foghlaim’ air bhog an t-seachdain seo agus e ag amas air pàrantan a tha a’ smaoineachadh air an cuid chloinne a chlàrachadh airson Foghlam tron Ghàidhlig. Tha grunn dhaoine a’ nochdadh sa bhidio agus iad a’ mìneachadh nam buannachdan a tha an lùib Foghlam tron Ghàidhlig agus dà-chànanais.

Tha an t-Àrd-Ollamh Antonella Sorace bho Oilthigh Dhùn Èideann a’ cur an cèill mar a bhios clann òga a’ togail chànanan gu luath agus na sgilean a bhuannaicheas neach bho bhith ag ionnsachadh barrachd air aon chànan.

Tha pàrantan cuideachd a’ nochdadh sa bhidio agus iad air an cuid chloinne a chur tro Fhoghlam tron Ghàidhlig ged nach eil a’ Ghàidhlig aca fhèin. Tha seo a’ freagairt uallaichean is cheistean a dh’fhaodadh a bhith aig pàrantan, leithid ciamar a thèid aca air an cuid chloinne a chuideachadh le obair-dachaigh agus na pàrantan seo ag innse gu bheil iad fhathast a’ faireachdainn gu bheil iad gu mòr an lùib foghlam an cuid chloinne.

Tha luchd-ciùil cuideachd a’ nochdadh sa bhidio, leithid an seinneadair-òranaiche Raibeart MacDhonnchaidh, agus Chad Mac a’ Ghobhainn bho na Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Tha iadsan a’ bruidhinn mu na buannachdan a tha an lùib Foghlam Gàidhlig agus na buaidhean a tha aige air fàs leanaibh san àm ri teachd.

Chaidh am bhidio a chruthachadh gus sealltainn do phàrantan cho beartach, in-ghabhaltach agus àraid ’s a dh’fhaodas Foghlam Gàidhlig a bhith, agus gus am brosnachadh gus brath a ghabhail air na cothroman a tha na lùib.

Thuirt an Comhairliche Alasdair MacFhionghuin, Cathraiche Buidheann Ro-innleachd agus Buileachaidh Gàidhlig Chomhairle na Gàidhealtachd, “’S e bhidio sgoinneil a tha seo agus tha e a’ mìneachadh gu soilleir gu bheil iomadh buannachd an lùib a bhith ag ionnsachadh barrachd air aon chànan. Tha e a’ sealltainn do phàrantan gum faod an seòrsa foghlaim seo a bhith cho tarraingeach agus gum faod e sgilean a thoirt dhan chloinn aca nach tèid aca air a leasachadh, ma dh’fhaodte, ann an suidheachadh eile.”

Chaidh am bhidio a chruthachadh le Sgioba na Gàidhlig aig Comhairle na Gàidhealtachd agus chaidh a mhaoineachadh le Riaghaltas na h-Alba. Dh’obraich an Sgioba leis an neach-deasachaidh Dòmhnall Eòghainn MacFhionghain, aig a bheil prìomh phàirt san dràma Ghàidhlig ‘Bannan’.

Chòrd am bhidio ris an luchd-amhairc nuair a chaidh ro-shealladh a thoirt seachad aig An Alltan, a’ cho-labhairt bhliadhnail do thidsearan Gàidhlig, agus cuideachd nuair a chaidh ro-shealladh a thoirt seachad aig Comataidh Cùraim, Ionnsachaidh agus Taigheadais Chomhairle na Gàidhealtachd.

Chithear am bhidio air làrach YouTube na Comhairle bho Dhiardaoin 8 Samhain air adhart aig https://www.youtube.com/user/TheHighlandCouncil

 

 

A National Strategy for School Libraries in Scotland

 

Vibrant Libraries, Thriving Schools: ‘A National Strategy for School Libraries in Scotland, 2018-2023’, was published in September. The strategy highlights ways that staff in libraries and schools may collaborate on continuous improvement and professional development. This strategy will be of interest to those in English and Gaelic Medium Education.

 

https://scottishlibraries.org/media/2108/vibrant-libraries-thriving-schools.pdf?dm_i=LQE,5Y3K5,5GL2BW,NAIEG,1

 

An Deasbad Naiseanta 2018

The preliminary rounds of the National Gaelic Schools Debate will take place on 6 and 7 November 2018. This year marks the twentieth national debate.  By participating in this competition, young people in Gaelic Medium Education are afforded an opportunity to develop their debating skills through the medium of Gaelic.

Education Scotland is pleased to be a sponsor for this competition along with Bòrd na Gàidhlig, The Scottish Government, Skills Development Scotland, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, The Highland Council, Glasgow City Council and Scottish Qualifications Authority.

The final round of the competition will be on 28 November at The Scottish Parliament.