Towards the Nurturing City

Since the initial Nurture Group pilot in Glasgow in 2001, Nurture is front and centre of Glasgow’s approach towards supporting children and young people to feel welcomed, nurtured and secure in educational settings across the City. Nurture Groups are set up to support children and young people who are finding it difficult to settle and learn in the wider classroom. If a child or young person is being considered for a Nurture Group, specially trained staff will gather information and work with parents/carers to decide if this is the right kind of support. If Nurture Group support is deemed to be appropriate, Nurture staff will work with other school staff in classrooms/playrooms to ensure that children are well supported there too. Parents/carers are key partners and will always be involved in their child’s education. This is key to the success of nurture support and parents/carers will be encouraged to join groups at particular times. Although Nurture Groups don’t suit all children who might need support we know that Nurture Groups can make a difference to many children and their families. Now, in 2020 there are approximately 68 Nurture Groups in Primary settings, 20 Nurture Corners in Early Years settings and 14 Nurture bases in Secondary Schools. Ongoing professional development for nurture staff and Quality Assurance is built into the model to ensure the continuity of high quality provision.

Alongside small group Nurture support, in 2012 Glasgow developed a policy ‘Towards the Nurturing City’ which set out a plan putting Nurture and wellbeing at the core of education. In Glasgow we want all children and their families to feel that their needs are understood and met and in doing this, to ensure that nurturing approaches are embedded holistically, in every establishment. This has been promoted in a number of ways; all establishment staff in Glasgow have received training on the Nurture Principles and the Nurture Steering Group was formed to help plan and implement nurture across the city. There is also a full time Nurture Development Officer, who supports the ongoing development of Nurture throughout the City and within the Educational Psychology Service there is a Nurture City Lead Group. Applying Nurture as a Whole School Approach is the current document being used in schools to provide a framework for assessing and evaluating progress against the Nurture Principles. This document reflects current thinking in how best to embed nurture into the fabric of schools by promoting self-evaluation and ongoing continuous professional development.

If you would like to know more about nurture support and the development of nurturing approaches in Glasgow please contact: Alison Crawford, Area Principal Psychologist.

Further information about our policy for inclusion can be accessed at:

Every Child is Included and Supported

Applying Nurture as a Whole School Approach document:

Applying Nurture as a Whole School Approach

*’Nurture Groups’ is used throughout to refer to our range of Nurture provisions including Nurture Corners in early years, Nurture Groups in primary schools and Nurture Bases in secondary schools.


Every August all Probationer Teachers in Glasgow attend a half day training session on nurture. The workshop covers how nurture has progressed in Glasgow and the current thinking in terms of nurturing practices in Glasgow schools. The workshop takes practitioners through the six Nurture Principles and provides an overview of how these can be used in practice to promote ways of supporting children and young people’s learning.

This is an audio recording of this year’s workshop delivered to a live audience on 25 August 2020.

Towards the Nurturing City