How to crack the good practice of inclusion

Despite challenges, at Inverurie Academy we believe we have developed a very inclusive ethos and a team approach to inclusion.

Guidance, senior management, support for learning and additional needs staff have worked together and striven to identify and support vulnerable and challenging young people. There is a strong emphasis on partnership working, particularly with parents, and well-established relationships with other agencies, such as health and police.

More recently, a major challenge has been how to help young people from abroad to settle in. The school has been involved in innovative practice, for example using a Polish pupil to support Polish youngsters in primary schools, and it will be involved in making an animated film about the good practice there is.

All this would not be possible without the staff. Their efforts in developing initiatives such as buddying, peer support, anti-bullying, cross-age tutoring and support for special school pupils makes us a very inclusive school - and richer.

This does not mean that we have got it cracked: there are still issues and hearts and minds to be won. But there is no shortage of models of good practice.

Douglas Milne rector, Inverurie Academy

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