All 17 Edinburgh schools that were closed because of fears over building safety have now reopened. The bulk of the schools affected were primaries, but the final schools to be handed back to the council last week were Drummond Community High and the Royal High, with all pupils expected to be back in their own schools for the start of the new session last Wednesday. The problems with the construction of 10 of the city’s new-build primaries, five secondaries and two special schools were identified after a wall collapsed at Oxgangs Primary in January during a storm.
Expert groups have unanimously backed calls to stop primary-aged children from being branded as criminals. The organisations, including children’s representatives, councils, the Law Society of Scotland and criminal justice charities, expressed support for a recommendation of an advisory group, which said that the age at which a young offender can be held responsible for a crime should be increased from 8 to 12. Currently, Scotland has the lowest age of criminality in Europe.
Teachers and librarians who go beyond the call of duty when it comes inspiring children and young people to read and write are set to be recognised through a new award. The Scottish Book Trust’s Significant Contribution to Scottish Children’s Literature Award, unveiled last week, will be given annually to one author or illustrator and one learning professional who have had a significant impact on young readers in Scotland. Nominations open on 31 August.
The Edinburgh International Book Festival kicked off last weekend. Events for schools include storytelling, author interviews, question-and-answer sessions and creative workshops. The festival features top authors and illustrators for children and teens and has a firm focus on participation, imagination and creation. There are events for every year group, as well as primary and secondary pupils, and the programme has been put together with the Curriculum for Excellence in mind. Find out more at edbookfest.co.uk