Additional Support for Learning review action plan: second progress report
Progress report from the Scottish Government and COSLA providing an update on work undertaken since November 2021 and summarising the actions to be taken to deliver the recommendations from the review of implementation of additional support for learning.
Teacher and Practitioner Professionalism
A significant amount of work has been undertaken to support delivery of the recommendations in this theme. There are 18 recommendations within this theme and 9 have been completed, with the remainder marked ongoing. A summary of these completed actions is below.
The Pupil Support Staff Working Group undertook a review of pupil support staff roles. Initial findings identified significant variation of support roles, working hours and pay scales across Scotland, with local authorities determining individual roles and remuneration in line with particular local needs.
Following this, the Pupil Support Staff Working Group commissioned Children in Scotland to engage directly with children and young people with additional support needs to inform the vision and values for pupil support staff. Children in Scotland undertook engagement with children and young people between May – July 2022. A report summarising the views of children and young people was provided to the Scottish Government in August 2022
The Scottish Government, Local Government and Education Scotland worked closely with members of the working group to develop and publish the first national Pupil Support Staff Professional Learning Framework in September 2021. The framework and induction guide continue to be refreshed. It has had over 27,000 views since publication.
The Stepping Stones programme has been refreshed. This is a new professional learning programme for recently qualified teachers in the first four years of their career post-probation. It has been developed in partnership between Education Scotland and GTCS, together with post-probation teachers. This programme allows participants to choose from a variety of professional learning opportunities, including online workshops, webinars and networking.
The GTCS Professional Standards were refreshed in 2021 to include reference to additional support needs throughout and make specific reference to autism and other neurodiversities. Building on this, the third edition of the Framework for Inclusion was published in June 2022 to reflect the refreshed GTCS professional standards.
"Thank you to you both for your time, advice and expertise through the process. It has been a great experience, and I am keen to continue learning and empowering the pupils and staff."
GTCS Dyslexia and inclusive practice programme participant
A new self-evaluation framework to support universities to demonstrate the quality of their existing initial teacher education provision has been developed by Education Scotland and the Council of Deans of Education. This Framework is supported by analysis from the Measuring Quality in Initial Teacher Education (MQuITE) project which is tracking teachers through initial teacher education and into the early years of their teaching career.
Education Scotland produced national guidance on An Empowered System in June 2022. This draft guidance can be used by all partners in the system to reflect on their role in achieving an empowered system. It recognises the importance of partnership with learners, parents and carers.
"I spent time with the mother thinking through all of these suggestions, forming a plan and deciding on her position. She then went to the meeting, stayed calm, asserted what she felt was needed (and also apologised for a previous outburst) and invited the school to work with her. This pretty much changed the game and by the end of the meeting, the school had agreed at least six action points to support her son. Mum was delighted. So, thanks again for your help – very much appreciated."
Quote from an Advocacy worker, supported by Enquire
Finally, the Scottish Government have discussed with both the GTCS and the Scottish Council of Deans of Education the viability of a qualification in additional support for learning. Partners agreed that student teachers need to experience the full spectrum of school teaching during initial teacher education and probation. Only at this stage will they be able to make an informed judgement on specialising in additional support for learning. The next steps planned for this work are outlined in the "Drivers for Improvement" section.
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