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Portobello High School, Edinburgh

Curriculum for Excellence recognises and values the benefits youth work and community education can bring to the skills and experience of young people.

Portobello High School in Edinburgh has been blazing a trail for a number of years, developing links with youth work with teachers and youth work professionals working together. The school now has its own youth worker who works individually with pupils and also runs drop-in sessions. The youth worker also liaises with teachers and other support professionals and runs an after school youth club.

Rachel Barr, community youth worker, says one of the biggest benefits of youth work within schools is the positive effect it can have on the confidence and self-esteem of young people. She said: "One of the great things about youth work is that it aims to help young people gain the confidence they need to value their own ideas.

Rachel's drop in clinic gives pupils a base where they can come for advice and support. It acts as a haven for pupils, where they can visit for practical, non-judgemental advice on problems ranging from issues with school work to problems in their personal life.

Teachers can refer pupils to Rachel if they feel they could benefit from individual, one-to-one advice or support. She works closely with teaching staff, sharing and developing each other's skills in working with young people.

Curriculum for Excellence was implemented in all Scottish nursery, primary and secondary schools as well as colleges in August 2010. For more information on how this will affect your child speak to your child's school or visit www.parentzonescotland.gov.uk.