News at a glance

Language centre announces poetry contest

A bilingual poetry competition is being launched by Scotland's National Centre for Languages, backed by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy. The competition, initially aimed at Glasgow pupils, includes two strands: a "mother tongue" category that encourages non-native English speakers to write in their own language, and an "other tongue" category, which invites young people to enter using a language they are studying in school. If the pilot goes well, the competition could be extended nationally next year. For more information, see .

Nobel Prize-winning scientists back creationism ban

Three Nobel Prize-winning scientists have lent their support to a campaign calling for a ban on teaching creationism in Scottish schools. Biologist John Sulston, chemist Harold Kroto and biochemist and molecular biologist Richard Roberts have joined more than 600 others in signing a petition lodged at the Scottish Parliament. Set up by the Scottish Secular Society, it calls on the Scottish government to ban state schools from presenting creationism and "young Earth" doctrines as viable alternatives to evolution.

Damning inspection for troubled Dundee school

A school that was investigated earlier this year after abuse allegations has been judged as "weak" in two out of five categories by inspectors from Education Scotland. Kingspark School in Dundee, which caters for pupils with additional support needs, was deemed "satisfactory" when it came to improvements in performance, learners' experiences and the curriculum. But it was judged to be weak in meeting learners' needs and in its ability to improve through self-evaluation. The result comes only months after an independent consultant found there was "no cause for concern" regarding pupil safety. The inspection report recommends additional training for staff, as well as improvements to the curriculum.

Prestigious college awards announce shortlist

The College Development Network has announced the shortlist for its annual awards. Forth Valley College is in the running for four prizes, and Dundee and Angus, Edinburgh, and Ayrshire colleges have all made it on to the shortlists in three categories. In total, 13 colleges are in the running for the eight awards. The winners will be decided by an independent judging panel and announced at a ceremony on 27 November in Edinburgh.

GTCS's most expensive case continues

A maths teacher was due to appear at the Court of Session today to launch an appeal against a decision by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) deeming her incompetent to teach. Janet Garner, a former teacher at Alva Academy and Alloa Academy, both in Clackmannanshire, was found to be incompetent in two GTCS hearings. In January this year, TESS revealed that her case - which at that time had already cost the GTCS more than pound;174,000 - was the most expensive ever heard by the teaching council. Ms Garner's first hearing began in November 2010. She said this week: "This is a fight for justice."

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