News RSS FeedCopyright (c) 2019 Activeditionen<![CDATA[Professional Learning opportunities by The Wood Foundation launch for 2020]]>The Wood Foundation has announced the launch of their Global Learning Partnerships (GLP) 2020 programme and the introduction of the RAiSE programme to Clackmannanshire and North Lanarkshire.

James Packham Rwanda 4The Wood Foundation’s GLP initiative, which involves a month-long summer placement in rural and city regions in Rwanda or Uganda upskilling educators in the country, enhances participants’ innovation, leadership and creativity skills. It has provided a career-defining and life-changing opportunity to more than 100 Scotland-based education practitioners and is inviting applications for its next cohort.

The programme is accredited by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS), as well as being endorsed by Education Scotland. It is an 18-month programme which, alongside the placement, includes training and debrief weekends, support towards accreditation in Global Education within Learning for Sustainability and access to a collaborative professional network.

GLP is majority-funded by The Wood Foundation. The month in Rwanda and Uganda is delivered in partnership with local education charities which support the development of teacher trainers who cascade learning throughout the two countries.

Laura Hepburn travelled to East Africa in summer 2019. She said:
“I don’t think I could have ever visualised how much of an impact the week placement has had on me.  In what is realistically a very short space of time, my attitude and mindset has gone through a subtle change and I feel empowered as a practitioner.”

BF2A9296The Wood Foundation has also launched their RAiSE (Raising Aspirations in Science Education) programme in Clackmannanshire Council and North Lanarkshire Council, who have appointed Primary Science Development Officers (PSDOs) to develop and deliver professional learning, create STEM networks and organise community events for the authorities’ 18 primary schools.

The programme empowers teachers with the confidence and skills to deliver inspiring and motivating STEM lessons.

RAiSE is a programme of The Wood Foundation, Education Scotland, Scottish Government and participating local authorities.

An external report into the success of the pilot element of the programme earlier this year found that three quarters of teachers were more confident in their science teaching following involvement with the programme. The same figure stated that pupils’ STEM career aspirations had also increased.

Find out more

You can find out more about Global Learning Partnerships and RAiSE on The Wood Foundation website

<![CDATA[Progress being made on college lecturer registration programme]]> 12 November 2019

Considerable progress is being made on the programme to register college lecturers with the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS). Two key sub-groups have been set up to help develop pathways to registration for lecturers.

A College Lecturer Registration Working Group (CLRWG) including representatives from GTCS, EIS FELA, Colleges Scotland, Scottish Government and universities offering the Teaching Qualification in Further Education (TQFE) has been working on the development of a bespoke registration model for college lecturers since early 2019.

The registration programme is being carried out in response to the National Joint Negotiating Committee settlement agreement of 2017, which requires registration of college lecturers with the GTCS.

Two sub-groups have been set up which will report to the CLRWG. The first is a Professionalism sub-group which will focus on ensuring that the distinct identity of the college sector is reflected in any registration and regulation arrangements. The second sub-group is a Registration group which will investigate registration criteria.

Kenneth Muir, Chief Executive and Registrar of GTCS and Chair of the CLRWG, said: “These sub-groups are looking in detail at the processes for registration and regulation of college lecturers in Scotland. It is a complex programme, which will respect the distinct identity of the college sector and ensure the professionalism of lecturers is recognised and developed through professional learning. Registration will enhance and raise the profile of college lecturer professionalism across the country.”

Larry Flanagan, General Secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), said: “The EIS has long supported registration for the country’s college lecturers, and looks forward to participating in the work of the new sub-groups. The dedication and professionalism of lecturers is key to the provision of a high-quality educational experience for college students, and GTCS registration will provide a welcome recognition of the value of the professional lecturing staff working throughout Scotland’s college sector.”

Shona Struthers, Chief Executive of the Colleges Scotland Employers’ Association, said: “We welcome professional registration for college lecturers and have been participating in a working group with key stakeholders to take forward this commitment. This is a great step forward for the sector which will ensure that all teaching staff in colleges are professionalised and ultimately enhance the quality of provision available to students across the country. The registration will be delivered through a measured approach and will ensure that the college workforce is fit for the future.”

Lecturers can register with GTCS today

Over 400 college lecturers are already registered on a voluntary basis in the Further Education registration category.

FAQs, including the benefits of registration with GTCS, are available to support college lecturers and managers with questions about the work of the groups.


Notes to Editors

For more information please contact Hannah Downie on 0131 314 6077 or

<![CDATA[Investment in services highlighted in GTCS annual report]]> GTC Scotland has published its Annual Report 2018–19

A key focus of work over the past year has been improving the reach, quality and efficiency of services for registrants and the wider public. To this end two new Development Officers were appointed to engage with local authorities, registrants, parent bodies and other education users across Scotland to increase understanding and awareness about the role of GTC Scotland.

Read the annual report in English

Read the annual report in Gaelic

The past year has seen investment in GTC Scotland’s headquarters, Clerwood House, by carrying out essential maintenance, upgrading the working environment, and improving IT infrastructure. Considerable resources were invested to provide stable, intuitive and useful online services for registrants. This has resulted in improvement to our server which is now operational 99.78% of the time, while also supporting a 63.5% increase in users on our website (912,283 which includes new and returning visits) compared to the same period in 2017.  This work will continue over the years ahead as we further improve our systems.  

Work continues with partners across Scottish education to promote teaching as a career choice and to explore new and innovative routes into the teaching profession. Over 2018–19 a review of the Memorandum on Entry Requirements for Initial Teacher Education programmes in Scotland, found that Scotland has high and rigorous entry requirements.

The Annual Report also looks back on the successes of 2018–19, including reaching the fifth anniversary of Professional Update, meaning every registrant has now experienced a Professional Update sign-off period.

Over the reporting period, work has been ongoing on refreshing the Professional Standards and the Code of Professionalism and Conduct. A consultation on the refreshed Standards and new Code closes on 20 December.

<![CDATA[Culture of trust and school readiness key to high-quality Professional Review and Development]]>31 October 2019

Fostering a culture of trust within schools, and ensuring all schools are ready to undertake Professional Review and Development (PRD) is key to teachers being able to develop their professional learning.

That’s the message of a new set of PRD guidelines, the first since 2014, launched by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) today, 31 October 2019.

The GTCS is the world’s first independent, self-regulating body for teaching. It is responsible for operating several online platforms for teachers including Professional Update (PU) and My Professional Learning (MyPL).

The Chief Executive of GTCS, Kenneth Muir, said the content of the new guidelines reflects how far the teaching profession has developed in the last five years:

“The guidelines launched in 2014 were heavily focused on how teachers should engage with PU.

“It is interesting that five years on, PU is embedded in teachers’ professional learning, so much so that the new guidelines can focus on taking PRD to the next level by identifying key-features required for a high-quality professional learning experience. 
“We are pleased to launch these guidelines and encourage everyone to embrace their roles and responsibilities to ensure PRD has a positive impact for all.”

The guidelines were developed by GTCS in collaboration with a Steering Group which included representatives from Scottish Government; Education Scotland; the teacher trade unions; Scottish Council of Independent Schools; Scottish Council of Deans of Education; Professional Learning Network; and the Association of Directors of Education. 

Senior Education Officer at GTCS, Sharon Smith said the guidelines aim to support teachers to fully engage in PRD, within a culture and climate of trust:

“We have listened to teachers from across Scotland and have endeavoured to address identified issues around PRD. We now hope that teachers and schools stop and reflect about their own contexts and their own understanding of PRD. Hopefully, using the recommendations within the revised guidelines, and the resources we have provided, we can move towards unlocking the full potential of PRD for all.”

Find out more

The new guidelines are available at:

<![CDATA[Views sought on teachers' professional standards]]>30 September 2019  

GTC Scotland is seeking views from the general public on a refreshed set of Professional Standards for teachers as well as a new Professional Code for teachers.

The consultation starts on 30 September 2019 and finishes on 20 December 2019 and is open to anyone with an interest in education. Please go to to find out more.

GTC Scotland Chief Executive and Registrar, Kenneth Muir, said: “The Professional Standards and Professional Code are integral to the working lives of teachers. These documents guide teachers through their careers, ensuring high standards and encouraging professional learning in order to continually update and develop skills. 

“We have refreshed the Professional Standards and revised the Code to reflect the changing educational landscape and the needs of teachers and, importantly, children and young people.

“We are now seeking the views of teachers and the wider public to ensure that the Standards and Code are fit for purpose.”

The Professional Standards and Professional Code support teachers in the following:

  • as a benchmark of conduct and professional competency,
  • to provide a framework for initial teacher education,
  • to support career-long professional growth,
  • to help develop professionalism,
  • to create a shared language for teachers and to ensure and,
  • enhance public trust and confidence in the teaching profession.

What is being proposed?

The recommended changes to the Professional Standards include updating the introduction so that it is set within a contemporary context while keeping the sections on knowledge and understanding; skills and abilities and professional actions largely unchanged. 

This was considered the best approach to keep the integrity of the Standards, as admired by the intergovernmental Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), but update the context within which they sat. In its report, “IMPROVING SCHOOLS IN SCOTLAND: AN OECD PERSPECTIVE” (2015), the OECD provided specific commentary on the professional standards (page 126 of the report):

“The standards are bold and supportive [sic]... However, standards frameworks are much harder to implement effectively than to set in the first place. There is a question of how deeply the GTCS standards have moved from the theory to the practice and become embedded in the professional culture of the Scottish educational system.”

The proposed Professional Code reflects a completely fresh and different approach from the existing Code of Professionalism and Conduct document, known as COPAC.

The focus in producing a new Professional Code has been to create a short, principles-based document which is accessible and positively framed. The new Professional Code will fit clearly within the suite of Professional Standards and has the Professional Values at its core.