SCIPD Group Study Visit to the Netherlands

SCIPD Group Study Visit to the Netherlands

6th  – 10th March 2012

Theme: The Circular Economy – Sustainable technologies, design, economics and production for the 21st century

Education Scotland is inviting applications from secondary teaching staff for a group study visit to ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands to investigate how cradle to cradle technologies and a circular economy can be used as a rich and stimulating context for interdisciplinary learning relating to sustainable development education and global citizenship. This visit has been arranged in partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

The Scottish Government is committed to a low-carbon and zero-waste economy, and it is important to develop enterprise, creativity and STEM (Sciences, Technologies, Engineering and Maths) skills in young people to ensure the realisation of these ambitious plans for the future. The circular economy concept proposes the use of sustainable technologies and innovative design and production methods that minimise waste and reduce the exploitation of the earth’s precious resources. Industrial companies in the Netherlands are at the forefront of developing products that mimic natural processes and that are designed for disassembly and reuse.

Education Scotland, in collaboration with The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, is developing strategies for professional development around sustainable development education and the circular economy to encourage the setting up of communities of practice among practitioners in Scotland. These will provide opportunities for ongoing, localised support and collaboration as recommended by Teaching Scotland’s Future

It is expected that the visit to the Netherlands will include:

–       Orientation sessions with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the Dutch curriculum agency SLO, to introduce participants to the model of the circular economy and brief them on the structure of the Dutch school system and curriculum

–       Visits to businesses which have adopted cutting-edge approaches to circular economy principles

–       Visits to schools to see how learning relating to the circular economy is being used as a theme for interdisciplinary learning around sustainability

Travel to the Netherlands will be on Tuesday 6th March, with three working days in the area, followed by return to Scotland on Saturday 10th March.

SCIPD funding will cover return flights to the Netherlands, airport to hotel transfers, and overnight hotel accommodation in ‘s-Hertogenbosch on a bed and breakfast basis.

Participants will be offered a pre-visit preparatory meeting, and a post-visit meeting to support follow-up activity and encourage wider impact.

This study visit is targeted at education professionals in Scottish secondary schools, particularly teachers of sciences, technologies, mathematics, business studies, economics and geography.

Expected learning outcomes

Participants will have an opportunity to:

  • Increase their knowledge of the circular economy concept, its implementation in industry, and its impact on education for sustainability
  • Investigate and discuss Dutch educational practice for sustainable development and its place in the curriculum
  • Share professional dialogue and reflection with their hosts and with colleagues in the group.

Upon returning from the study visit, participants will be expected to:

  • Produce reports for Education Scotland which demonstrate the impact on their professional practice of the study visit experience
  • Disseminate findings, share ideas and new approaches within their own establishment and beyond
  • Make changes to learning and teaching practices in their own professional context.

Applicants may wish to use the experience of the study visit towards professional recognition by GTCS or simply to enhance their professional understanding and practice.

Applications are invited from suitably qualified members of Scottish school or authority staff, who should complete the Netherlands group application form available below or by email from Nick Morgan at

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 21st Feb 2012

SCIPD Netherlands application form