News at a glance
Four-year headship wait ends for Gaelic primary
A permanent headteacher has finally been appointed at the Gaelic primary school in Inverness after a four-year search. James Lyon will take up the post at Bun-sgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis, having been acting headteacher there for a number of months. Mr Lyon, who is learning Gaelic, has been appointed after interviews last Friday. When the school opened in 2007, it was the first purpose-built Gaelic-medium school in Scotland. For the past four years, however, Highland Council has had difficulty in finding suitable candidates for the school leader role. A major drive to meet the demand for Gaelic teachers was announced recently by Gaelic agency Bord na Gaidhlig, entitled Thig Gam Theagasg (Come and Teach Me).
Sex and drugs poll reveals gaps in knowledge
Some 27 per cent of Scottish teenagers believe that when a girl says "no" to sex she does not always mean it, a survey commissioned by the Scottish government has found. The study of more than 1,000 S3-S6 students also found that 89 per cent believe, even if someone says "yes" to sex, that they have the right to change their mind at any time. The Ipsos Mori research shows that 36 per cent do not know about the HIV risk of sharing needles or syringes, and 17 per cent do not realise that using a condom can help to prevent sexually transmitted infections.
Marching to the beat of different drums
Huge disparities in the cost of music tuition have been highlighted in an Audit Scotland report looking at a wide range of public charges. Tuition is free in several local authorities, but in some places parents can expect to pay hundreds of pounds a year. EIS general secretary Larry Flanagan said the findings backed up the union's own investigation into the issue last year. Some progress had been made, he said, but "there is still much to be done to level the playing field".
'Named person' plan meets resistance
Hundreds of parents have expressed concern about plans to introduce a "named person" for every young person in Scotland. In a Scottish Parent Teacher Council survey, 74 per cent said they were "not content" or "very unhappy" with the idea proposed by the Scottish government, which in most cases would lead to a teacher or health worker being assigned to their child. Executive director Eileen Prior said: "The proposal implies that every child is at risk and every family is struggling, which we know is not true, and in fact undermines the role and responsibilities of parents."
Centre for educational change opens in Glasgow
The new Robert Owen Centre for Educational Change at the University of Glasgow was officially launched by education secretary Michael Russell this week. In his speech, Mr Russell said that the centre's focus would be on the persistent attainment gap - what he described as "the most stubborn and elusive problem of all". From the start, he said, the centre would work directly with teachers, schools, councils, colleges and other universities, and would draw on "the best thinking, the best practice and best people from around the world".