Pupil Motivation Seminar

I was invited to take part in the Scottish Parliament’s
Education Committee seminar on
pupil motivation.

The event took place at Dynamic Earth with members of the committee joining various break out groups- see below

Group 1

? What steps should be taken to emphasise further the fundamental importance and value of education?

? What can be done to build earlier careers education and advice into pupils’ school experience and to demonstrate links between success at school and career success?

Group 2

? What should be done to ensure leadership skills are further developed within the teaching profession?

? What action can be taken to maximise the levels of motivation amongst teachers?

Group 3

What actions should be prioritised to enable teachers to address the learning needs of individual pupils ?

What can be done to help pupils take responsibility for their own learning and develop their commitment to lifelong learning?

Adamson, Bruce Scottish Commissioner for Children and Young People
Ledingham, Don East Lothian Council
McLean, Alan Glasgow City Council
Sandford, Kate Quarriers

Group 4

? How should concerns over the challenge presented by the transition from primary to secondary school be addressed ?

? What further steps should be taken to enhance the status of vocational courses?

Group 5

? How can the parents and the wider local community be better engaged in developing a feeling of ownership of a school ?

? What further steps should be taken to ensure that individual schools and local authorities share and promote best practice ?

I took part in Group 3 along with MSP Fiona Hyslop. We came up with a couple of key recommendations :

1. Schools should introduce a formal mechanism to enable pupils to provde feedback to their teachers about the teaching and learning process.

2. Pupils should be able to take more responsibility for their own learning through project work as Alan McLean described it – Gradual Autonomous Support (GAS)

After the event I had lunch in the Parliament with Alan McLean – what a fantastic building! We explored the notion of a variety of entry points for teachers as we have been exploring in East Lothian. Alan has been struggling with a similar question and liked the notion of motivation being the linking factor or goal.

I then caught a
debate in the chamber about the Bichard Inquiry and the Local Government Finance Bill. I have to admit to being a great supporter of the
Scottish Parliament – the Scottish people now have real access to govenrment. I think it will evolve into a very positive force for change in Scotland over the next 10-20 years.

Back to the office to pick up on correspondence and phone calls.