A week in education

20th March 2009 at 00:00

The national initiative to embed enterprise education in schools, Determined to Succeed, will have cost Pounds 153 million by the end of the spending review period in 2011, since it started in 2003. In a parliamentary answer, Fiona Hyslop, the Education Secretary, said Pounds 127.8 million was allocated through local authorities and the remainder retained by central government.

As the recession takes its toll on university hardship funds, Labour has called for the poorest students to be given a minimum income of Pounds 7,000. The party says maximum support in Scotland is Pounds 4,510 compared to Pounds 6,200 in England. Funding for students facing hardship in Scotland totals Pounds 16 million this year.

Scottish job seekers will benefit from a more individualised approach to careers advice, the Education Secretary announced. Skills Development Scotland will improve people's awareness of their "marketable skills and attributes" and make employment services and support more accessible, as a response to the global economic crisis.

Scottish footballers' reading habits will be revealed in an attempt to get families excited about books. A player from each of the 12 Scottish Premier League clubs has volunteered for SPL Reading Stars, part of the national Big Plus literacy campaign, including Aberdeen's Jamie Smith, Celtic's Gary Caldwell and Steven Naismith of Rangers. They have nominated their favourite books for children and adults, among them Harry Potter, Roald Dahl children's classics and graphic novel Maus.

The Scottish Government is spending Pounds 14.9 million over three years on the eCare system, designed to ensure better exchanging of child-protection information between agencies. It will be in place by 2011. The Government is also part-funding a Pounds 1.5 million police information system - the Vulnerable Persons System - to improve information-sharing about vulnerable people between police forces. Meanwhile, Education Secretary Fiona Hyslop has promised to look into whether Lord Laming's report on child protection in England has any implications for Scotland.

The number of placing requests by parents to local authorities decreased by 0.5 per cent in 2007-08, to 28,498. The proportion of requests granted was down from 85 per cent to 82.3 per cent. Requests for P1 were at 22.3 per cent of the P1 pupil roll, and for S1, 13.6 per cent of the roll.

An Aberdeen physics teacher has been reprimanded by the General Teaching Council for Scotland after admitting he looked at pornography on school computers during classes. The GTCS did not think it was in the public interest to remove Jeremy Dobson, who was suffering from severe depression and "deeply regretted" his conduct at Robert Gordon's College. Meanwhile, a teacher has been struck off after being placed on the sex offenders' register for public indecency outside Clydebank High. Guy Milford was employed at Clydemuir Primary, Dalmuir, at the time.

Darren Burnside, who petitioned the Scottish Parliament for the removal of the Catholic Church's veto over the employment of teachers, has withdrawn his petition. He accepts he had no grounds for claiming his partner had suffered discrimination by not being given a permanent job in a denominational school because she was not Catholic.

Last week, The TESS reported on Lauren Boath, a Dundee High physics teacher piloting PARSEL modules (popularity and relevance of science education for science literacy), but we mistakenly referred to it as "PASTEL".

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