News at a glance

27th September 2013 at 01:00

Publish and... you might win

TESS is pleased to announce its support of a competition designed to encourage writing and publishing in Scottish schools, being launched today. The imPRESS Scottish School Media Awards, organised by Menzies Distribution, is open to all secondary schools wanting to start, or showcase, their own newspaper, magazine, newsletter or online publication. The winners will be announced at a special awards ceremony in Edinburgh next June.

David McIntosh, managing director of Menzies Distribution, said: "Producing a successful publication requires a combination of creative and organisational skills, and the ability to work as part of a team." The deadline for entries is 30 April 2014, and details can be found at

Independence could be costly

An independent Scotland would face cuts of around #163;5.9 billion (15 per cent) in its first two years, a new report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies says. But education - where spending is in line with the UK as a whole - would be a less likely target for cuts than social services, where Scotland spends 26 per cent more per person than the UK average.

University acceptance ratings up from last year

The number of people from the UK and the EU accepted to start at British universities this academic year is up 9 per cent from 2012-13, according to the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. More than 22,200 of the 445,820 acceptances were deferred entries. Acceptances to Scottish institutions rose by 2 per cent, to 37,390, compared with a 10 per cent increase at English institutions.

That'll be a birdie

The organisers of the Ryder Cup in 2014 have revealed plans to ensure an educational legacy from the competition. A new online resource designed to teach a range of school subjects - including history, science and physical education - through golf-related topics was launched this week at the Community School of Auchterarder, in the presence of Ryder Cup captains Tom Watson and Paul McGinley.

Private school enrolments take a dip

The number of children enrolled in Scottish independent schools has dropped slightly. On 2 September, there were 31,146 students at these schools and nurseries, compared with 31,358 the previous year. The number of boarders has dropped by 1.6 per cent, from 3,496 in 2012-13 to 3,441 this year. The Scottish Council of Independent Schools said figures had remained stable over the past 10 years, and there had been a recent rise in enquiries from prospective students.

Meal do naidheachd! (Congratulations!)

An extra #163;4 million over the next two years will increase the number of places available in Gaelic-medium education across Scotland, to meet rising demand. Languages minister Alasdair Allan made the announcement last week when Edinburgh's first dedicated Gaelic-medium school, Bun-sgoil Taobh na Pairce, was officially opened. Dr Allan said: "We are already seeing good results with a rise of 12 per cent in pupils entering P1 this year, showing that our strategy to encourage a new generation of Gaelic speakers and teachers is working well."

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