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Children's champion sets out his stall

Scotland's children's tsar plans to investigate how to improve access to education for children from poor backgrounds "or other difficult circumstances".

This is just one task set to occupy the mind of Tam Baillie, Scotland's commissioner for children and young people, over the course of the next four years.

He will also work to:

better protect children and young people from domestic abuse;

promote respect for children and young people by challenging prejudice and negative perceptions;

highlight measures to ensure that young people facing barriers to inclusion have equal chances, with an initial focus on disabled children.

Mr Baillie's plan is dictated by the 74,059 children and young people who took part in his Scotland-wide consultation, A Right Blether.

They identified their top concerns as:

"In our homes we should be safe and secure."

"Where we learn we should have the same chances, no matter how much money our families have."

"In our communities we should be safe and respected."

"In the country we live in, Scotland, we should all be included, no matter how different we all are."

Mr Baillie is now writing to every primary and secondary school in Scotland to report back on the action he plans to take.

Give 16 and 17-year-olds the vote, page 34

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