Education Leadership and Professional Learning Subgroup - minutes: September 2022

Minutes from the group's meeting on 8 September 2022.

Attendees and apologies


  • Carol Young (Chair), Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights (CRER)
  • Lesley Whelan, Education Scotland
  • Asif Chishti, General Teaching Council (Scotland)
  • Mark Langdon, Glasgow Life
  • Louise Barrett, Scottish Council of Deans of Education
  • Tara Lillis, NASUWT
  • Khadija Mohammed, Scottish Association of Minority Ethnic Educators (SAMEE)
  • Rhona Jay, Association of Directors of Education Scotland (ADES)
  • Samir Sharma, Quality Improvement Officer, Glasgow City Council


  • Mélina Valdelièvre, Education Scotland
  • Charlotte Dwyer, ScotDec (Scottish Development Centre)
  • Olwen Fraser, Northern Alliance Regional Improvement Collaborative
  • Sarah Guy, Early Learning and Childcare, Scottish Government

Items and actions


Carol Young chaired the meeting and welcomed those in attendance with apologies noted. 

Note of last meeting

No changes.

Brief update on Building Racial Literacy cohort 2 and discussions on plans for cohort 1 recall session

Lesley shared an update on the current position for the next two cohorts of the BRL programme:

Cohort 2 started last week with over 100 attending and there are people from cohort 1 facilitating as one of the aims of the programme is to make sure we have the capacity to support this programme in a sustainable way. The group discussed the potential for training and development for those recruiting and interviewing educators as well as what support there may be for equalities groups.

Action 1: Asif to link in with Lesley and Mélina regarding training and development for recruiters.

Group members discussed the opportunity to develop relationships and practice between school settings and community settings due to the potential for more colleagues joining the programme from CLD. There are a number of CLD colleagues from Education Scotland on the programme who may be able to support and identify previous practice which could be further developed. Support for further work in CLD and ELC has previously been mentioned at the Programme Board as demand is increasing and further resource may need to be found to facilitate.

A recall event is planned for September for BRL Cohort 1 to support colleagues to reflect on what has happened after their engagement with the programme and consider impact from their anti-racist action plans. Mélina would welcome feedback on the process, outline programme and potential guests as well as evidence which we might want to capture. Any comments need to be back by Tuesday next week. 

Programme board update - rationale, terms of reference and membership

Lesley is waiting for the final terms for reference for the Programme Board and these will be sent on when received. The first meeting of the Board was held last week and meets once a month. Feedback from the Board was that it might be helpful to have the same person from the ELPL workstream attend the Board to ensure continuity. The group to advise if anyone is will to attend these. Education Scotland do not have a named position on the board. The group discussed if there needed to be an agreed set of anti-racist principles which could sit across the workstreams potentially building on and streamlining the principles developed by the curriculum reform sub group.

Show Racism the Red Card feedback

Group members discussed the feedback and identified that many of the comments carried weight and members felt more time may be needed to fully hear the voices of young people and do more to include them. In scenarios where young people are talking about race we need to have well trained people working with them and being comfortable going to places the young people go. The group agreed that young people need to see and feel that action is being taken including feedback to the young people who took part.

Leadership actions and connections

Asif is going to be working with Education Scotland on Middle Leadership and Leadership programmes to further develop work in this area. Khadija is also working with the leadership programmes within Education Scotland and will work together with Asif to complement each other’s sessions. Asif is going to focus on standards and professional values.

The aim is to have learning around anti-racist education and anti-racist leadership in the full suite of programmes as well as the online professional learning. The Middle Leader and Educator Leadership programmes are open to CLD and Early Learning colleagues. Including the GTCS standards are helpful but they would not apply to colleagues from other parts of the education system and therefore wider standards need to be included.

Action 2: Lesley to set up meeting with Asif and ES colleagues

The group feels strongly that anti-racism should be the starting point on a leadership journey and should be considered as a core part of preparation for a leadership role.

Group members also consider that there should be discussions around learning for sustainability and policy coherence as part of the values in education.

Members were updated on plans to launch the national conversation at SLF and Professors Alma Harris and Carol Campbell will be leading it and there will be opportunities to get involved. 

Members discussed where there are gaps currently in provision and engagement. Colleagues from ITE are involved in the BRL programme and there is an aim to have colleagues from institutions leading on CLD education involved. System leaders are also involved in the programme to support advances in actions and leadership practices.

There appears to be a gap in ELC provision in this area with greater capacity required. It might be helpful to consider what regional collaboratives have in place for those who have participated in the programme in order to support further learning and engagement in anti-racist practice. This can be followed up via CLPL leads. A further meeting with CLPL leads will be held in March/April which could offer a good opportunity to support work in Local Authorities and RIC’s and could include a review of all cohorts in advance of recruiting for cohort 4.

Glasgow City Council is intending to bring all their participants from the BRL programme together to go through each of their individual plans. The pupil forum is also involved where feedback has been reviewed from last year with actions including a ‘ you said we did’ and the biggest agenda was equality.

Considerations for the future include:

  • ongoing support/encouragement/connection and possibly reflective supervision for BRL participants, particularly Cohort 1
  • how do we engage with BAME parents on this work?
  • how do we involve PLL co-ordinators in schools as well as LAs/RICs
  • how to develop this work as a system priority, what opportunities can be identified to support this? Colleagues from ADES who were involved in the leading in colour report will host a session at the ADES conference

Update from evaluation discussions

Nothing to report at present.

Future agenda items

Professional learning for teacher educators over and above the BRL programme.

Any other business

Edinburgh university are going to launch Rigen which is the successor to CERES. Asif will attend and report back anything of interest.

The recent Cricket Scotland report may also be of interest for colleagues to read.

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