Press Catch-Up

23rd September 2011 at 01:00

Doubt over faith schools


A Church of Scotland leader has warned that calls for more faith schools would "undermine" efforts to educate children of all religions. The Reverend Ewan Aitken, secretary of the Church of Scotland's Church and Society Council, said kirk schools would harm existing education provision for all faiths. Three leading Scottish Tories had backed a greater role for faith schools, to offer parents increased choice.

Bulk of job cuts in colleges


College staff have borne the lion's share of job cuts in the public sector, with more than 1,000 posts slashed in the past year. Scottish Government statistics show a 7 per cent drop in the number of employees working in further education since 2010. The fall from 16,000 to 14,900 students comes as colleges deal with last year's 10 per cent funding cut.

St Kilda log goes online


The final entry in the log book is succinct but poignant: "Today very probably ends the school in St Kilda as all the inhabitants intend leaving the island this summer." It was written by the Reverend Dugald Munro, the local missionary and teacher. His entries and those of others at the school are now available online.

Scots light on inspections


Scotland's schools are subject to fewer annual checks on classroom standards than almost any other developed country. Figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development show 16.7 per cent of Scottish secondary schools are inspected. This is bettered by a number of countries, including the Czech Republic, where a third of schools are inspected, and the Slovak Republic (20 per cent).

Dispute over buildings


Highland Council is in dispute with a company responsible for maintenance at 11 schools over payments for using the buildings after hours. The row could cost the council a seven-figure sum if it loses. Under the public- private partnership scheme, Alpha Schools Highland Ltd paid for 11 schools to be built for pound;134 million during 2007-08.

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