24th November 2006 at 00:00
Citizenship should feature more prominently and explicitly in the professional development of teachers at all stages, from initial teacher education to the Scottish Qualification for Headship, according to a new report.

Research by the Education for Global Citizenship Unit at Glasgow University, which involved 6 per cent of teachers in their induction year in 2004-05, found that awareness was high of the fourth national priority, which encourages schools to "work with parents to teach pupils respect for self and one another and their interdependence with other members of their neighbourhood and society and to teach them the duties and responsibilities of citizenship in a democratic society".

However, just over half of the 126 respondents had "detailed" or "some"

awareness of the key Education for Citizenship document, produced by Learning and Teaching Scotland in 2002. The internet, however, offered access to citizenship material, as would GLOW, the forthcoming digital network system. The research suggested that there were many aspects of good practice already taking place - from pupil councils to conflict resolution in classrooms.

However, the report added: "What it does not (and cannot) tell us is the extent to which this situation is directly related to the citizenship policy framework itself, or whether this merely reflects long-standing practices in relation to climate and ethos in many Scottish schools."

One area that emerged as relatively weak in schools was the limited use of international links, with just over a quarter of respondents indicating that this was a feature in their schools.

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