News at a glance

23rd October 2015 at 00:00

SNP pledges more qualified teachers for nurseries

First minister Nicola Sturgeon has promised to “substantially increase” the number of qualified teachers working in nurseries. By 2018, every nursery in Scotland’s most deprived areas will have an extra qualified teacher or childcare graduate, she said in her speech to the SNP conference in Aberdeen last weekend. The SNP has already said it will expand free nursery care to 30 hours a week for vulnerable two-year-olds and all three- and four-year-olds. The government would ensure that parents could take their available hours of childcare whatever their working patterns, Ms Sturgeon added.

Have your say on ‘digital learning strategy’

The Scottish government wants to hear views on its “digital learning and teaching strategy”. The consultation will run until 17 December and is open to all. Events around the country will allow the issues to be debated with officials in attendance. The next is in Dundee on Tuesday. Find more details at bit.ly/DigitalConsultation

Use of ADHD drugs ‘alarming’, Tories warn

The number of children being prescribed medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is rising at an “alarming rate”, the Scottish Conservatives have said. The party highlighted an NHS report showing that 9,810 people in Scotland – most aged between 5 and 14 – were given ADHD drugs in 2014-15. This represents a 6.9 per cent increase on the previous year and nearly 150 per cent on a decade ago (bit.ly/ADHDreport). Liz Smith, the Conservatives’ spokeswoman on young people, said the figures “pose serious difficulties for schools”.

Leaders’ body offers rebate for Into Headship

Members of primary school leaders’ body the AHDS can now claw back some of the cost of the Into Headship qualification. The organisation has backed the qualification but does not believe that those taking part should have to pay. As a result, the AHDS is offering members who complete Into Headship a rebate of half their annual ADHS subscription fee. “We realise that this represents only a small part of the commitment you have been asked to make but we want to do what we can to support you,” it told members.

Protesters fight library cuts at Holyrood

Campaigners protested outside the Scottish Parliament as they stepped up their fight against cuts to school libraries and librarians. The Save Scotland’s School Libraries campaign was seeking support for its petition urging the Scottish government to set out a new national strategy for school libraries (bit.ly/LibrariesPetition). Saturday’s protest came a day after TESS reported that Argyll and Bute Council could shut all its secondary school libraries as part of an effort to save up to £26 million over five years.

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