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Partners galore

Partnerships, as this column has recorded over the past few weeks, are the new game in town - and not only in our towns, but elsewhere. Assorted Ayrshire educationists have been marching through Georgia, if not from Atlanta to the sea then at least from Kilmarnock and Ayr to Coweta and Fayette counties.

Ayrshire Enterprise, the development and training arm of Scottish Enterprise, is behind this drive and education is going along for the run, or at least the flight.

East and South Ayrshire have reported recently on these international links in which business leaders and educational policy-makers are invited to point the way forward for education.

The councils would have felt immediately at home dealing with the "Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education", a business-inspired movement.

John Mulgrew, East Ayrshire's director, also appears to have felt at home at the education board meeting in Coweta County to which he and Tom Farrell, his chair, were invited. "The meeting was similar in many ways to the work of the education committee in East Ayrshire," Mr Mulgrew reports. Aaargh.

In Shetland they are also getting into partnership, taking advantage of an initiative to promote links between education authorities in Britain and Germany. Shetland is one of only six UK authorities to make a successful application. The islands' link is to be with the German state of Sachsen-Anhalt. Appropriately, one of the Shetland primaries involved is Gott. Mein what?

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