Education Scotland’s Scots Language Coordinators Katrina Lucas and Simon Hall are looking for more schools who may be interested in taking part in a new scheme to promote the use of Scots Language in schools.
The Scots Language Ambassador scheme was launched in Edinburgh during Book Week on 24th November 2014. So far, Education Scotland has enlisted around 40 confident Scots speakers from different walks of life from all over Scotland who are willing to volunteer their time to work in partnership with a school, to encourage staff and pupils to use Scots within the classroom and raise the status of the language.
The Ambassadors will be expected to become champions of the Scots language, and work with schools for a period of three years to foster a love of the Scots language amongst learners. They will be expected to visit schools to learn about good practice in Scots education. They will also get involved with other activities within the school such as leading assemblies, writing a blog or newsletter, and acting as guest speakers or judges at school events.
A number of Ambassadors have already confirmed their involvement in the scheme including the cast of the Singing Kettle, Scottish Young Traditional Musician of the Year 2014 Robyn Stapleton, prizewinning author James Robertson and poet and Dundee Laureate W.N. Herbert. They will develop meaningful partnerships with schools that will provide a positive environment for Scots to flourish.
Dr Simon Hall, Scots Language Co-ordinator with Education Scotland, said: “We’re bringing together schools and Scots speakers from all over Scotland in order to celebrate and promote Scots language education. All of the Ambassadors and practitioners involved share a love of Scots and a commitment to providing young people with an understanding and appreciation of what is, after all, a priceless national treasure.
“The scheme works to create links between schools and Scots speakers within their communities to offer learners the chance to meet role models who use Scots, and show them that it can be used in their careers, and in their personal and professional lives. We want to celebrate and publicise good practice in Scots education and demonstrate that it is appropriate to be used in formal school and other contexts.
The introduction of the scheme is already proving popular amongst primary schools, with many considering Scots as a possibility within the 1+2 languages framework. Secondary schools are also getting involved to develop the new Scottish Qualifications Authority Awards in Scots Language to formally recognise learning in and about Scots.