Annual Conference 2017: Jamie’s reflections

 

The first in a series of reflections from some participants at our annual conference, Changing Futures, on Thursday 2nd February 2017. More to come! Jamie is a youth and community worker with the Spartans Community Football Academy – a new type of school that’s about a whole lot more than football! Find out more on this link, or contact Spartans directly – details below.

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The day kicked off with a review of the ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) Study, which looked at the impact of ACE experiences on the child and how this impacts in later life. Some examples of this are:

–       Children who suffer ACE’s but have someone to talk to are

less likely to suffer substance abuse and/or crime issues.

–       Children who suffer ACE’S are likely to suffer the consequences of these later in life.

–       Children with 4 or more ACE’s are 32 times more likely to have difficulties with learning.

 

We heard the stories of two volunteers, who have both had ACE’s, who have now turned their lives around – one who spent significant time in a mental health institute and the other who is a recovered heroin addict. These young people are now volunteers from the Turn Your Life Around.

 

The woman who had previously been in a mental institute (amongst several other issues) has now set up her own social enterprise called Real Talk: Storytelling for Mental Wellbeing.

The second volunteer is also now working with a charity called Aid and Abet.

It was particularly interesting to hear the story of Tracy Berry from Forthview Primary School, who is the Family Support Teacher. Her sole job is to engage and build rp1040336elationships with the parents of pupils at the school. Eileen Littlewood, headteacher at Forthview, says Tracy’s success has “literally saved lives”. She spoke a lot about the importance of helping the parents and the evidence that points towards this directly helping young people in education.

 

I particularly enjoyed about hearing from two Care Experienced Campaigners from Who Cares? They described their experiences of living in the care system and how they believe it  can be improved.

 

John Carnochan – an “interested bystander” spoke at length about how he believes the education system can be improved – in particular proposed that children shouldn’t start school until they are 7.

 

 

Jamie Tomkinson

Youth and Community Worker

 

The Spartans Community Football Academy

94 Pilton Drive, Edinburgh EH5 2HF

0131 552 7854

www.spartanscfa.com

@Spartans_CFA

#hereforgood

Annual Conference: “Changing Futures: Believing in our young people.”

BOOKING NOW OPEN

Following last year’s highly successful conference in the Caves, on the theme of “Equity and Aspiration in Education”, booking is now open for this year’s event.

The theme will be “Changing Futures: Believing in our young people” chosen by the SELMAS Committee to continue the focus on issues related to the educational experiences of those young people whose needs are not being met by our current system. As always we have signed up a number of spirited and challenging speakers to stimulate discussion and reflection.

These will include:
John Swinney MSP, our Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills who will outline current Government strategies designed to “Close the Gap.”
Mairi Breen, headteacher of Braehead Primary School who will describe how her teachers are making a real and lasting difference to children in their school who are living in poverty.
John Carnochan who as a senior police officer worked for many years in some of the most deprived communities in Scotland where the levels of poverty and deprivation were usually matched by a sense of hopelessness and disconnection from society.
Cathy McCulloch, Co-Director of the Children’s Parliament which works with children in the context of family, school and community. The Parliament connects children with each other, with adults, with their communities and allows them to influence the development of better services for children.
Sarah-Jane Linton and some of the young people from Who Cares? Scotland which is a national voluntary organisation, working with care experienced young people and care leavers across Scotland.
As always the Conference aims to offer stimulating and creative thinking around this key issue for all educators, and an opportunity to engage with others in thought-provoking discussion.

The venue is the Radisson Blu Hotel, 80 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1TH and the date is February 2nd 2017

Book via eventbrite: http://bit.ly/SELMAS020217
This conference is supported by and in partnership with SCEL, the Scottish College for educational Leadership
SCEL

Michael Apple seminar at University of Stirling

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PORTO ALEGRE, RS, BRASIL, 18/07/2013: Abertura do I Seminário Internacional de Educação, promovido pela SEDUC. EM destaque, o palestrante Michael Apple Foto: Pedro Revillion/ Palácio Piratini.

The Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Stirling will be hosting a seminar ‘Are Current Educational Reforms Really Democratic?’, led by Professor Michael Apple The seminar will take place on Monday 20 June, at 4pm. Professor Apple is one of the foremost educationists in the world, and the seminar promises to be both stimulating and challenging, as well as very relevant in the context of current educational reforms in Scotland. To sign up for this free event, please reserve your place on our eventbrite link

Coming soon – #Brainstrust4: the challenges of equity in education

Welcome back to session 2015-16. Everyone at SELMAS wishes all our followers; leaders, educators and students alike every success and best wish for the new term. To kick things off we have organised our fourth Brainstrust event – this time in the new Malala Library in the recently rebuilt James Gillespie’s High School. We are grateful to Mr Donald MacDonald of the school for letting us use the premises and also to the Centre for Confidence and Well-being for their partnership in this event.

What is Brainstrust?

Brainstrust is a SELMAS speciality – it is a SELMAS type of discussion event we like to host on a very topical issue; sometimes in response to a document or report which is relevant to educational leadership, or sometimes on a question or problem which has been ruminating within the system and surfaces at a certain time.

Being an independent body of volunteers we can organise these events quickly, so they have a bit of a “pop-up” feel. Keep on the look-out for them as you don’t often get much warning! To do this we rely on friends and supporters, so we always have a partner organisation with us in brainstrust.

We call these events “Brainstrust” because they involve serious thinking about serious issues  and true to our principles, SELMAS does not defend any particular agenda in the course of the discussion but allows all manner of questions to be asked – difficult and awkward ones included, in order to allow a space for mature, open, informed and sometimes critical conversations about educational matters to take place.

If you are on our mailing list a flyer will be arriving in your inbox very soon. But as a special reward for reading our blog you can preview it here: Flyer for Brains trust 9.09.2015 and get your booking in early via eventbrite. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Collaboration for equitable educational improvement: towards self improving systems

Professor Mel Ainscow gave the one year anniversary lecture recently at the Robert Owen Centre for Educational Change at Glasgow University. The theme was equity and improvement in education – something close to the work of SELMAS in recent times. You can find information and slides from the talk below. Contact the Robert Owen Centre directly if you’d like to be included on their mailing list for future events.

 

Ainscow Glasgow Lecture Handout Nov 14

Final Evening slides 6th of November

Sheila Laing’s talk on Social Justice: annual conference 2014

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Sheila has kindly made her presentation available to everyone and added an audio commentary  just click on the loudspeaker symbol on each slide to hear it. Many, many thanks, Sheila. Hope others get as much from it as we did on the day.

Click either  here or on the image above  to download Sheila’s presentation.