The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Scottish Education Minister Fiona Hyslop
visits South Ayrshire Council

SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning Fiona Hyslop visited South Ayrshire Council Headquarters for a business meeting with chief executive David Anderson and a group of councillors and chief officers.

[Pictured at the County Buildings in Ayr are (left to right) councillors Hywel Davies and Brian Connolly, deputy leader of the Council Margaret Toner, Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning Fiona Hyslop, South Ayrshire Council chief executive David Anderson and councillor Ian Douglas.]

The minister then visited Queen Margaret Academy in Ayr to meet participants of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Pilot Project, part of the recognition of wider achievement within the Curriculum for Excellence.

Scottish Government Ministers have been visiting local authorities during the summer to discuss various aspects of Curriculum for Excellence as well as other education and social matters that can affect young people in their home environment. It has also been an opportunity to highlight the work being carried out by the Council through a range of initiatives to address the needs of those being educated in South Ayrshire schools.

South Ayrshire Council deputy leader Margaret Toner said: “By working with the Scottish Government, we can shape the future of education in South Ayrshire and provide young people with the necessary foundation stones for a good education.”

Curriculum for Excellence challenges all those involved in education to review the curriculum for children and young people between 3 and 18 years of age. It encourages everyone engaged in educational activity to take responsibility for developing the capacities, attributes and capabilities necessary for children and young people in the 21st century. It also encourages a fresh look at creative, innovative approaches for organising learning to offer experiences that are more personal, provide greater choice and appropriate challenges.

While at Queen Margaret Academy Fiona Hyslop also met Duke of Edinburgh’s Award director for Scotland Barry Fisher, head teacher Moira Gray, Carrick Academy deputy head Jamie Wilson, Duke of Edinburgh Award project co-ordinator Louise Speedie, and South Ayrshire Council award officer Bruce Harris.

[Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning Fiona Hyslop is pictured with representatives from organisations and volunteers who have supported The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Project at Queen Margaret Academy and Carrick Academy, and councillors and young people who have participated in the project.]

Fiona Hyslop said: “I am delighted to meet with the council today to discuss important local and national issues, and to have the opportunity to meet young people who are involved in the Duke of Edinburgh Curriculum for Excellence pilot.

“Taking part in projects such as this helps young people develop their personal and social potential, and makes an important contribution to active citizenship, active communities and social inclusion.”

[Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, Fiona Hyslop (right) met Derek Dorrans, 15, (left) from Carrick Academy and heard about the Beekeeping Club from him and Lyndsay Baillie (centre) principal PE teacher Carrick Academy.]

Bronze Award participants, Poppy Murray (15) and Sean Pieper (15), who have been involved in a Graffiti Art Project as part of their Skills Section, were at the school to show the Minister what they have been involved in and to answer any questions. Poppy and Sean are the first pupils from the S3 year group participating in the Curriculum for Excellence Pilot Project to achieve their Bronze Award. After presenting them with their certificates, the Minister congratulated them on their achievement.

[Pictured after the Minister presented Award certificates are (left to right) Barry Fisher, award director for Scotland, Poppy Murray (15) Queen Margaret Academy, Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning Fiona Hyslop and Sean Pieper (15) Queen Margaret Academy.]

Councillor Hywel Davies, the Council’s Portfolio Carrier for Learning and Prosperity said: “The visit to Queen Margaret Academy highlighted the participation of young people in South Ayrshire in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Pilot Project that enhances their existing skills and teaches them new ones. The experience helps to make them well rounded citizens, to take part in community activities, and to use their leisure time constructively.”

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