Watch that clock
- Every teacher in 12 Edinburgh schools has been ordered to fill in timesheets for the past three months after a bizarre and anonymous complaint that staff are working more than 48 hours a week in contravention of the European working time directive. The Health and Safety Executive is to investigate teachers' hours, a move the city council believes could have serious repercussions for the spirit and ethos of the McCrone agreement on teachers' 35-hour week.
Ministers bite down on junk food
- Overt commercial sponsorship of food and drink by companies such as Coca-Cola and McCain could disappear from schools under proposed nutritional guidelines for local authorities. The low take-up of free school meals and unappealing nature of school lunches will be two other key targets for the first concerted Scottish Executive effort to change children's eating habits.
Running a school deserves an Oscar
- The average secondary is in the top 25 per cent of businesses in terms of complexity, staffing and budget, yet heads have "barely a scintilla" of the resources of the rest, Lord Puttnam of Queensgate told secondary heads at their annual conference in St Andrews. The profession had to raise its profile, one reason why he approved of the televised national education awards; Scotland declined to take part.
Is the future laptops for all?
- The latest initiative for taking learning and teaching well into the cyber age has been launched in Dundee. In a pound;275,000 collaborative venture between the city and the Scottish Executive, primary and secondary pupils and their teachers are to be given personal laptops. The intention is to explore over the next two years how this might improve learning in school and at home.
All change for the Hooligan Express
- A train known locally as the Hooligan Express is being transformed into a "learning shuttle" with the help of four laptops and two homework tutors. The service from Whitby in North Yorkshire had become notorious for its unruly schoolchildren. Now one school, Eskdale, is trying to put the 50-minute journey to good use, having secured a pound;15,000 grant.