All posts by Lesley Forrest

Consultation on Free Bus Travel for under 19’s

As you may be aware, the Scottish Government plan to launch a new national travel concession scheme to provide free bus travel for young people under the age of 19. They anticipate that legislation to underpin the scheme would be required to be laid in Parliament in early 2021 and the scheme would come into effect later in 2021.

For the next six weeks (until Monday 7th December), Transport Scotland are running a consultation in regards to this scheme to gather information on the most appropriate ways to provide this free travel to best suit young people. They are hoping the consultation will reach as many members of the public as possible, especially to those who will be impacted by the proposals, including children and young people, their parents and carers and people who work with children in a paid or voluntary capacity.

The consultation can be found on https://www.transport.gov.scot/consultation/consultation-on-free-bus-travel-for-people-resident-in-scotland-aged-under-19/

More information on the proposed scheme can be found on https://www.transport.gov.scot/news/consulting-on-free-bus-travel-for-young-people-under-19/

Virtual Undergraduate Open Day – Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry at the University of Strathclyde

Staff from the Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry will be online and ready to answer any queries from 10am-2.30pm on Saturday 14th November.  The live Chemistry presentation will take place at 10.15am-10.35am.

Students can register to attend the event here:

https://www.strath.ac.uk/studywithus/openday/

We are delighted to let you know that the Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry has recently been rated Number 1 in Scotland and Number 3 in the UK for Chemistry (Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide).

You can find out more about our 5 undergraduate chemistry courses by visiting our departmental web pages www.strath.ac.uk/chemistry

You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter @StrathChem and view many of our informative videos, including a Virtual Open Day Tour on our YouTube Channel ‘Strathclyde Chemistry’.

We would normally have an array of brochures for students to peruse at our on-campus open days.  Here are the links to pdf copies of those brochures that we hope will be of use to you:

MChem Chemistry

MChem Forensic and Analytical Chemistry

MChem Chemistry with Drug Discovery

MChem Chemistry with Teaching

MSc Applied Chemistry with Chemical Engineering

Chemistry Careers Brochure

Chemistry Industrial Placement Brochure

Online Application System for Nuffield Research Placements 2021 opened today (9th Nov)

The Nuffield Research Placement Scheme is aimed at the current 5th year pupils who will be sitting their Highers in 2021 and who are studying any Science, Technology, Engineering and/or Maths (STEM) and Social Science/Humanities subjects at that level. The placements help increase confidence and improve key skills including practical, communication, report-writing and presentation skills. Placements also provide students with excellent experiences & skills to include on CV’s and personal statements. By working with professional scientists and engineers in a real-life environment, the students gain an invaluable insight into a wide variety of careers.

The scheme, now managed by STEM Learning, aims to widen access and priorities are being placed on students eligible for the bursary, this means the charitable funding is targeted where it will have the greatest benefit.

In 2020 although we did not have face-to-face placements we did still offer all students who had successfully applied virtual/online projects with supervisors and complimented these with research skills building modules (62 students in Scotland successfully completed projects). This year we are going for a blended approach and we are hoping to have face-to-face projects where possible (2-3 weeks, possibly staggered over a longer period), or if needed again virtual/online projects only, where government guidance and individual institutions and organisations policies allow or restrict. We will be implementing the research skills modules again and hope to roll these out to all successful applicants, even if they do not receive a project offer, and boost this with other skills opportunities, so most applicants will now benefit.

To be eligible to apply for a Nuffield Research Placement, students must:

  • Be over 16 years old
  • Be in full-time state-funded education in the UK
  • Have at least 5 National 5 / GCSEs (or equivalent) at Level B / 6 or above, including maths, a science subject and English (or another humanities subject)
  • Be studying one or more Scottish Higher, A-level (or equivalent) in science, technology, engineering, economics, geography, psychology, computing, statistics or maths
  • Be able to spend several weeks (4-6) of their summer holiday working on research modules and the research project

Students must also meet at least ONE of the following criteria:

  • Come from a family with a combined household income of below £30,000 a year
  • Be entitled to free school meals, either now or at any time in the last six years.
  • Be living, or have lived in, local authority care

There is an eligibility tool for students too, in case they wish to find out before applying: https://www.stem.org.uk/nuffield-placement-tool

Summary of the process:

  • Students apply by completing an online application:  https://www.nuffieldresearchplacements.org/
  • When registering, students insert an email address of the teacher who is to provide them with a reference. The system automatically generates an email to that teacher to allow them to add reference.
  • After the closing date, (March 31st 2021) applications will be scored, matched to placement projects available/suitable (where possible) and the appropriate applications will be forwarded to various supervisors for their consideration.
  • If successful matched and accepted to a project by the supervisor, the student is then offered the project.
  • Placements normally take place at the end of June, July or early August.  The student will normally be working Mon-Fri (9am-5pm) for 4, 5 or 6 weeks. Students should therefore be made aware that is quite a big commitment.
  • All students will receive reasonable travel costs to and from their placement. Project students who are eligible for bursary will receive an additional £200 per placement.
  • Successful students are required to submit a report at the end of their placement and are invited to a celebration event (either in-person or virtual, depending on government guidance and restrictions).

PLEASE NOTE – an application does NOT guarantee a Nuffield placement, however all applications are treated fairly and considered.

More information on the Nuffield Research Placements scheme can be found at https://www.stem.org.uk/nuffield-research-placements

 

Letter to parents and carers from NHS Lothian

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

Thank you for everything you are doing to help keep your school safe, open and COVID free.

The measures your school has in place are necessary to protect children, staff and you as parents/carers. We must continue to work together and support our school staff in making the school as safe as possible, even if this feels difficult at times.

Staying two metres away from people who are not in your household will help to limit the spread of coronavirus. This is just as important outside. I wanted to highlight the importance of keeping a two metre distance from others at the school gates. If you can, please wear a face covering to help limit spread of the virus. Face coverings help reduce the spread of droplets, and so help limit the spread of coronavirus. Whilst we appreciate this is a difficult time and these measures can be trying, if we keep working together and do our best now to stop COVID-19, for example by not gathering at school gates and by wearing face coverings, we will get through this with fewer people becoming unwell.

The new restrictions announced by the First Minister include not having family and friends who don’t live with you inside your house and you not visiting other people’s houses. Having visitors and visiting other people’s houses has been the source of many COVID cases in recent weeks. This means that if we avoid having visitors and visiting others, we will all help limit the spread of coronavirus across households at this difficult time whilst cases are rising. This will help us to keep our schools and other services open.

Finally, please remember if your child or anyone in your household has one or more symptoms of COVID-19 (a new, continuous cough, a high temperature/fever, or loss of, or change in sense of smell or taste) you should ALL stay at home and the person with symptoms should get tested. Find out how to organise a COVID test on NHS Inform or phone 0800 028 2816. Please contact your school or local authority if you feel you may need help with self-isolation.

This has been a hugely difficult time for us all, and there are trying times ahead. However, everyone can make a difference, and by working together and following the FACTS we can help limit the spread of the virus, keep our schools open and our communities safe.

F – Face coverings

A – Avoid crowded places

C – Clean your hands regularly

T – Two metres distance

S – Self-isolate and book a test if you have symptoms

Yours sincerely

Alison McCallum

Director of Public Health and Health Policy

S5/S6 – University Scholarship for pupils hoping to study law – entries open until 22 July 2020

CMS is the 6th largest law firm in the world and has recently been named in The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers. As well as supporting students in their university applications, our Law Scholarships offer students a chance to develop a relationship with us and start their journey into the legal profession. We hope a CMS Law Scholarship is a great opportunity for a school pupil hoping to go on to study law.

Who can apply?

We are looking for two S5 or S6 state school pupils, hoping to go on to study law, to become our next CMS Law Scholarships winners for Scotland. The winners will receive £2,500 per year, for each year of their law degree, together with mentoring support and paid work experience with the firm. This is now our sixth year of awarding the scholarship in Scotland and previous winners have gone on to study law at Aberdeen, Glasgow and Strathclyde.

How do pupils apply?

To enter the competition, we ask for a short essay and application form, which is to submitted by Wednesday 22 July 2020. You can find full details of the CMS Law Scholarships and how to apply on our website.

You will see that there are certain financial and academic criteria to be met in the competition – we will be happy to receive queries from pupils to confirm their eligibility, if they are unsure about this.

Brightest Watts eWeek July 2020 – Heriot-Watt University

Although the global situation means that we are unfortunately unable to run our Brightest Watts Summer Week in the usual format. Over the past few weeks, we have taken time to consider the options available and are now very excited to announce the updated Brightest Watts programme for 2020/2021 S5 pupils.

This programme is comprised of three parts:

  • Brightest Watts eWeek – Monday 27 – Friday 31 July 2020
  • Brightest Watts eWeek masterclasses – three dates throughout the year
  • Brightest Watts eWeek Residential – Monday 12 – Wednesday 14 July 2021 (3 days and 2 nights)

 The Brightest Watts programme aims to provide new S5 pupils with a motivational insight into university life. The atmosphere is friendly and supportive and the emphasis is on meeting new people, learning new skills and boosting confidence.

All activities on the Brightest Watts programme are free. We expect pupils to commit to taking part in all three parts of the programme.

Pupils who are interested in taking part in the programme can find further information and an application form at www.hw.ac.uk/summerweek. Places are limited and although we welcome all applications, we will prioritise pupils with care experience, those with caring responsibilities and those from schools with low progression rates to higher education. The deadline for application is Monday 6 July.