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Clackmannanshire Council Online

Attainment Challenge Moves Forward

Published on:


November 2015

The Council has outlined the progress that is being made with the Attainment Challenge programme in a report to the Education, Sport and Leisure Committee.

As announced earlier this year, the Scottish Attainment Challenge will focus on primary schools and target improvements in literacy, numeracy and health and wellbeing. It will build on, and complement, existing activity to address the gap in educational attainment between our most and least advantaged communities.

An Attainment Challenge Team has now been established to lead the Scottish
Attainment Challenge in Clackmannanshire. An Attainment Challenge Co-ordinator and a Literacy & Numeracy Hub Leader have been seconded from Clackmannanshire primary schools to the team. In addition, the Scottish Government has allocated an Attainment Advisor to Clackmannanshire. The Attainment Challenge Team are located at the Attainment Hub - a work and resource base which has been developed in Alloa Academy. The Hub is also used for meetings and training.

Universal and targeted support approaches have been discussed with schools and plans are being implemented. Training and professional learning opportunities are being provided for all primary teachers, for Literacy Leaders in each school and for all headteachers. The first session for each of these groups has taken place.

An Attainment Challenge Management Group has been established to oversee and monitor the work of the Attainment Challenge and this first meeting has been held.

In Clackmannanshire the Challenge seeks to:

  • Raise attainment for each child to enable them to make excellent progress in their learning and develop the skills and ambitions to improve their life chances. It aims to promote a breadth of attainment and achievement, consistently for all our children and young people.
  • Close the gap in attainment and achievement between children from the most and least advantaged backgrounds. The Attainment Challenge in Clackmannanshire will target support to pupils and schools in deprived communities.

The Challenge in Clackmannanshire will focus on improving literacy, numeracy and health and wellbeing in our primary schools and will have firm foundations within Curriculum for Excellence. It will be ambitious for every child and young person. It will build on the success of our schools in raising attainment and adopt approaches to enable our schools to be continuously self-improving. It will:

  • Encourage collaboration where our schools work in partnerships to drive forward improvement and where Clackmannanshire works with other local authorities to share information and ideas and develop best practice.
  • Build and strengthen effective partnership working between teachers, schools, pupils, parents, communities, employers and a range of other partners within Clackmannanshire and further afield.
  • Support innovation with a clear focus on raising attainment, drawing on national and international research, literature and practice and utilising specialist advisors and wide professional expertise.
  • Build capacity in our schools to ensure that improvements are sustainable for the future.

Councillor Ellen Forson, Convener of Education, Sport and Leisure said: "I am delighted that we now have the team of staff in place for this project. We are determined to improve life chances for our children and young people and I am confident that this extra support and focus will help us to ensure that we support our young people to help the very best of their talents and be ready for the challenges that face them in the years ahead. Ultimately the aim is to increase the number of young people moving on to positive destinations such as employment, further education or training."

Seven local authority areas, which includes Clackmannanshire, are the first beneficiaries of the Attainment Fund. These areas were selected as the local authorities with the highest concentrations of primary pupils in SIMD (Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation) deciles 1 and 2.