I work in schools in all corners of the UK, but increasingly in Scotland. The first flight to Edinburgh or Glasgow, a day’s work with a school and the last flight back is just feasible with schools in the central belt.
But why the interest in BLP in Scotland, when most English schools are currently being forced to grapple with new GCSE examinations and ‘life after levels’?
The answer is simple – Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence, a coherent 3-18 curriculum which grew from the Donaldson Report. The curriculum focuses on 4 key outcomes: successful learners; confident individuals; responsible citizens; and effective contributors. High standards are implicit, but they are not seen as the be all and end all.
There are echoes of personal learning and thinking skills (remember those?), Every Child Matters (dropped in 2010 because it was deemed too expensive by the incoming Gove era, or perhaps because every child did not matter), and of the need to educate the whole child – something long since regarded as dangerous laissez faire nonsense in the age of Raise Online.
Teachers in England in need of some summer reading could do worse than going online and exploring the Curriculum for Excellence at Education Scotland. It might well raise spirits and remind us that there is more to education than examination success.
Teachers in Wales could do likewise, as the Welsh curriculum is currently being redesigned along Curriculum for Excellence lines.