This Week

12th April 2013 at 01:00

Closures and mergers loom

- A number of primary schools in Fife face closure and others are set to merge as the council tries to bridge a #163;70 million funding gap. Seven primaries face closure: Tanshall, Wellwood, Pitcorthie, Crombie, Dunino, Rathillet and New Gilston, while the council plans to "monitor" Warout Primary and potentially change the catchment areas of Lynburn, Touch and Masterton primaries. The council, however, stressed that communities and parents would be consulted.

Directors set to leave their jobs

- Two prominent education directors are set to leave their posts this year. Don Ledingham, director of education and children's services at Midlothian Council, and executive director of services for people at East Lothian Council, will quit his job in August to become director of innovation and leadership at leadership consultancy, Drummond International. Christine Pollock, North Lanarkshire Council's director of learning and leisure, retires in September.

Climbing up the well-being table

- The UK has moved up Unicef's child well-being tables this year after being controversially branded, in 2007, the worst place in the developed world to be a child. However, Unicef UK warned that the improvements risked being reversed by the coalition's cuts programme. And there are still areas in which the UK ranks low: teenage pregnancy rates and young people under 19 not in education, employment or training.

Tool to test proficiency

- The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development has created a tool to help schools to benchmark students' proficiency in reading, maths and science against the world's top education systems. The OECD Test for Schools is based on its Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa), which is conducted every three years and involves more than 70 countries. The new test enables schools to compare their scores with those in other OECD countries.

Tuned up for Monster Music

- The Royal Scottish National Orchestra's performances for children aged up to 5 return next week with double the number of concerts. This year's theme is A Teddy Bear's Picnic and young concert-goers are invited to bring their favourite soft toys. Monster Music and Monster Music for Families combine popular orchestral repertoire with well-known songs and nursery rhymes.

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