4. Regional Improvement Collaboratives
We will include provisions in the Education Bill to provide appropriate legislative underpinning for national and local government participation in the new Regional Improvement Collaboratives.
Regional Improvement Collaboratives will bring together a range of professionals with a relentless focus on supporting teachers and other school staff working with children and young people to improve their wellbeing, attainment and outcomes. The Collaboratives will include sector and curriculum area support including additional support for learning. They will provide targeted advice and support in order to drive improvement, making use of all available evidence and data. They will help teachers to access the practical improvement support they need, when they need it. We will continue to work with partners on the detail of how the Regional Improvement Collaboratives will be developed.
Schools will be able to draw on a range of expertise through their Regional Improvement Collaborative. This could be from local authority, Education Scotland or other sources such as Speech and Language Therapists or other NHS Allied Professionals. This will provide access to the targeted support based on the needs schools have identified. The Collaboratives will bring a collective focus to driving continuous and systematic improvement, particularly in relation to closing the attainment gap. They will demonstrate, strengthen and support collaborative working, innovation and the sharing of best practice between schools and across our education system.
Since June this year Scottish Government officials have worked closely with local government through a joint Steering Group to develop an agreed model of how the Collaboratives could work effectively and at the same time retain local and national accountability. The Steering Group’s report has been agreed by the Deputy First Minister and by COSLA Leaders.
|The Northern Alliance|
|Aberdeen City Council
Argyll and Bute Council
Orkney Islands Council
Comhairle nan Eilean Siar
Shetland Islands Council
|The Tayside Collaborative|
Perth and Kinross Council
|Dundee City Council|
|The West Partnership|
|East Dunbartonshire Council
Glasgow City Council
North Lanarkshire Council
South Lanarkshire Council
|East Renfrewshire Council
West Dunbartonshire Council
|South West Collaborative|
|East Ayrshire Council
South Ayrshire Council
|North Ayrshire Council
Dumfries and Galloway Council
|South East Collaborative|
|Edinburgh City Council
Scottish Borders Council
|East Lothian Council
|Forth Valley and West Lothian Collaborative|
West Lothian Council
Each Collaborative will be led by a Regional Improvement Lead, appointed by agreement of the Chief Executives of local authorities that make up the Collaborative and the Scottish Government (advised by the Chief Inspector). The Regional Improvement Lead will be employed by one of the authorities in the Region, and formally line managed by the Chief Executive of that authority, whilst reporting to all of the collaborating authorities in the Region and to the Chief Inspector. All 6 Regional Improvement Leads are now in place.
Each Collaborative will have a detailed Regional Improvement Plan in place by January 2018. It is proposed that the Collaboratives should also be required to publish reports about what has been achieved as a result of those plans.
Existing legislation gives local authorities powers to collaborate on various functions including the provision of education but does not require them to do so or define the nature or extent of that collaboration. Given the central importance of collaboration in improving education outcomes it may be desirable to require local authorities to participate in the Regional Improvement Collaboratives. This is something we will keep under consideration but, at a minimum, the Bill will embed the requirement for collaboration between various parties involved in education provision.
As such, new statutory duties could secure in legislation the status and underpinning framework for Regional Improvement Collaboratives and provide a basis for any statutory guidance that may be required to provide further detailed direction or clarity.
Should the Bill include provisions requiring each local authority to collaborate with partner councils and with Education Scotland in a Regional Improvement Collaborative?
Should the Bill require each Regional Improvement Collaborative to maintain and to publish annually its Regional Improvement Plan?
If we require Regional Improvement Collaboratives to report on their achievements (replacing individual local authority reports), should they be required to report annually? Would less frequent reporting (e.g. every two years) be a more practical and effective approach?
In making changes to the existing planning and reporting cycle, should we consider reducing the frequency of national improvement planning and the requirement on Ministers to review the National Improvement Framework?
Email: David Hannigan
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House