Response 1002009481

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About You

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Name
Clare Bethell

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Organisation
North Ayrshire Council

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Questions

1. Do you agree with the definition provided of STEM for the purposes of this Strategy?

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No

2. Do you think the aims of this Strategy and the four priority themes are the right ones to address the challenges identified?

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No
Do you think the aims of this Strategy and the four priority themes are the right ones to address the challenges identified?
Aim 1 will address the challenges across all of the four priority themes. Aim 2 - It may be better to highlight the STEM skills across the subjects that are offered within education at all levels to keep the breadth of learning. This would further develop coherence, connection and equity. Through this more people could access more STEM skills through a wider range of subjects and pathways with a more knowledgeable base. The four priority themes are the right ones to address.

3. Are these success criteria right?

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Ticked Yes
No

4. Do you think the scope of the Strategy is right? Tell us if you think it should exclude something or include anything else. For example, should it include training and development that employers provide for their workforce?

Do you think the scope of the Strategy is right? Tell us if you think it should exclude something or include anything else. For example, should it include training and development that employers provide for their workforce?
The emphasis should be expanded to include pupils with the broad general phase (S1 – S3). This will help to achieve both aims.

5. Give us your views on whether you think the actions already underway across the sectors on STEM fit well with the Strategy and will contribute positively to it.

Give us your views on whether you think the actions already underway across the sectors on STEM fit well with the Strategy and will contribute positively to it.
The actions already underway across the sectors on STEM fit well with the Strategy and will contribute positively to it.

6. Tell us about activity currently ongoing – either included in this document or not – that you think could be adapted or stopped and why.

Tell us about activity currently ongoing – either included in this document or not – that you think could be adapted or stopped and why.
In areas where parents and families are unable to bring in external expertise, there needs to be priority to ensure that there are external employers/ambassadors available to fill that gap. There is already in place positive relationships with local STEM employers/businesses which need to continue to be built to make sure that there is equity in all school regardless of the family expertise. The STEM ambassadors programme is working really well and should be continued. The STEM ambassadors training is becoming more curriculum focused and contextualized to support the schools and the ambassadors to ensure that positive outcomes are reached. Whole school and cluster approaches are important as this allows for progression of learning and experiences which aids transition and can allow for less repetition of work. This gives schools the opportunity to build on specific aspects of learning in a contextualized way. The CLPL that SSERC offers is excellent. More of this should be developed. The Institute of Physics gender work looks at parents, pupils, staff and schools which is needed to tackle inequality across all of the subjects and unconscious biases. The implementation of the Digital learning and Teaching Strategy is working well to increase the skills, confidence and knowledge of staff. It would be beneficial to look at the STEM subject content for the initial teacher training for Early Years and primary staff with the aim to increase confidence and knowledge for new educators entering the education workforce. As part of the SDS’ ‘Future Me’ campaign, we piloted a workshop for pupils that was developed in partnership and delivered by employers with contextualize the curriculum at National 5 level. The roll out and the expansion of the Foundation Apprenticeships needs to be adapted to ensure that the breadth of choice for the young people is not reduced and that there are clear (and proven) progression pathways to Higher Education, Further Education and entering the workforce within both the specific apprenticeship area and related ones. The development of ‘Employability Bites’ between schools and SDS, Energy Skills, is enabling schools to have contextualised learning which is matched to the curriculum and is accessing employers regardless of the school’s location and the time that they teach. The concept is good but there are concerns for the development of these lessons and the associated CLPL due to availability of teachers to develop the materials. The Science Centres and festivals works really well. There are a wide range of options available to schools and staff at a variety of locations and prices to ensure that the engagement opportunities are available to all. There are a significant number of opportunities that CLD are offering to schools, staff, young people and their families to meet the local needs.

7. Do you agree with the principles set out for implementation?

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Ticked Yes
No

8. What else should Government do to ensure a more coherent approach and maximise impact?

What else should Government do to ensure a more coherent approach and maximise impact?
A central development team which offers support to local authorities and schools

9. Overall, do you think this Strategy is clear and action focused? Do you think that the actions that we propose to take nationally will achieve the aims and intended outcomes?

Overall, do you think this Strategy is clear and action focused? Do you think that the actions that we propose to take nationally will achieve the aims and intended outcomes?
Yes

10. Will this Strategy improve equity of outcomes? If not, tell us what else it should include, in particular for women and girls and other groups of people – disabled people, care leavers and minority ethnic communities.

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No

11. What could schools, colleges, universities, community learning and development, the voluntary sector, science engagement providers and museums do to support the areas for action?

What could schools, colleges, universities, community learning and development, the voluntary sector, science engagement providers and museums do to support the areas for action?
Schools – work with partners to ensure that opportunities for young people are supported with all the relevant information to ensure that informed choices are made Science Engagement providers – events, workshops etc. that they offer must be affordable, sustainable and they must make explicit links to the curriculum and have contextualised learning with links to careers built in. CLD – engage with parents, schools and employers to work to encourage STEM careers and information for local employment opportunities. Colleges/Universities – offer a variety of pathways for all to access learning, taking into account individual needs.

12. What could professional organisations and bodies and third sector organisations do to support the areas for action? This includes, in particular, the General Teaching Council for Scotland, the CLD Standards Council, the teaching unions and representatives and the Learned Societies.

What could professional organisations and bodies and third sector organisations do to support the areas for action? This includes, in particular, the General Teaching Council for Scotland, the CLD Standards Council, the teaching unions and representatives and the Learned Societies
Universities and Colleges build into initial teacher STEM skills especially at early years and primary level in conjunction with GTCS. This could then be continued by local authorities as part of the probationer CPD programme. Learned Societies to support the development of the curriculum and ensuring that the E&Os are supported by the relevant CLPL Information from the labour market is to be shared with teachers on an annual basis.

13. What more could science centres and festivals do to complement and enhance STEM formal education, to inspire scientists of the future, and to ensure their activities support those of the Scottish Government and its agencies?

What more could science centres and festivals do to complement and enhance STEM formal education, to inspire scientists of the future, and to ensure their activities support those of the Scottish Government and its agencies?
Continue to engage with schools via both their outreach services and at their centres. Ensure that their programmes are open to all regardless of income.

14. Should this Strategy identify more actions for particular sectors, for example in relation to workplace and work-based training and development? Please make suggestions on what these actions could be.

Should this Strategy identify more actions for particular sectors, for example in relation to workplace and work-based training and development? Please make suggestions on what these actions could be.
The strategy has enough actions which can be done across sectors.

15. Tell us what you think about this Improvement Framework. How can we best ensure uptake of this Framework in early years learning settings, schools and clusters?

Tell us what you think about this Improvement Framework. How can we best ensure uptake of this Framework in early years learning settings, schools and clusters?
The Improvement Framework is straight forward and easy to see progression. Schools would need to be able to access support on using the framework if they required it. To ensure the uptake of the framework would schools need to report on it? Should it be part of HGiOS? Schools need to know that it is a supportive framework to help them evaluate and review the STEM within the school.

16. Tell us what you think of our proposal for developing a model of collaboration between schools, colleges, universities and employers. How should we now take this forward?

Tell us what you think of our proposal for developing a model of collaboration between schools, colleges, universities and employers. How should we now take this forward?
In principle, this sounds good. Development time and meeting times need to be built into the working time agreement to ensure that it becomes sustainable and to gain momentum.

17. Tell us what you think of our proposals for a Scottish STEM ambassador network. How should we now take that forward?

Tell us what you think of our proposals for a Scottish STEM ambassador network. How should we now take that forward?
We question the need for a separate Scottish STEM ambassador network. The STEM ambassador network already in place is working really well through Science Connects based at Glasgow Science Centre. There are some challenges to get partnerships in place, the model of collaboration could support these areas. Employers have to have some corporate responsibility so that meaningful and guided partnerships can be developed and sustained.

18. What other groups, organisations or people need to be involved in delivery of this strategy?

What other groups, organisations or people need to be involved in delivery of this strategy?
None

19. Tell us about what you are doing in your organisation, establishment or community that supports the aims and priorities of this Strategy.

Tell us about what you are doing in your organisation, establishment or community that supports the aims and priorities of this Strategy.
• STEM coordinators in each school • Regular STEM coordinators meetings to raise awareness, share opportunities with a variety of partners, skills and knowledge • STEM teacher within the Authority’s Professional Learning Academy to raise attainment in literacy and numeracy through STEM • Specialised STEM days for secondary pupils with a focus on careers:  Girls into STEM  N5 Life Sciences – contextualised learning through employers and SDS  NHS careers awareness day • STEM ambassadors networking events with schools • Gender balance work with IOP & UWS • Cluster planning within STEM subjects and employability/careers • Digital Learning team supporting schools • STEM newsletter • CLPL opportunities with SSERC and Young Engineers Science Clubs • ‘Employability bites’ being developed to contextualize learning within the curriculum • A wide range of options for young people within the STEM subjects including vocational pathways • STEM transition days & projects between P7 & S1 • School-College partnerships within STEM subjects including Foundation Apprenticeships • STEM days and weeks at primary schools • STEM & coding clubs in schools • STEM ambassador partnerships developed • Senior pupils becoming STEM ambassadors • Employer partnerships with a STEM focus developed • CLD partnerships e.g. Motor project & Music Technology • Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM) awarded in some Primary Schools • Partnership work with Dumfries House for both staff and pupils • Partnership work with IBioIC for National 5 pupils • Partnership work with Chamber of Commerce and their DYW team

20. What could employers do to attract and retain more diverse STEM talent?

What could employers do to attract and retain more diverse STEM talent?
Review job descriptions to highlight the variety of achievement pathways and progressive pathways available within STEM. Highlight the STEM skills that are required for their workplace.