Scottish council rolls out meta-skills programme across secondary schools

Inverclyde Council becomes first authority in Scotland to work with charity to implement digital platform across all schools to support students in developing abilities such as critical thinking and collaboration

Inverclyde Council has become the first local authority in Scotland to introduce across all its secondary schools a programme to support children to use digital tools to develop so-called ‘meta-skills’.

The concept of meta-skills refers to those abilities that can support further learning or the application of knowledge. Areas such as critical thinking, creativity and collaboration are often considered to be meta-skills.

Using a digital platform, learning charity Gen+ runs a meta-skills programme offering children aged 10-14 interactive lessons.

First implemented in 2022 at Inverclyde Academy and St Stephen’s High School, it will be introduced at St Columba’s High School, Notre Dame High School, Clydeview Academy, and Port Glasgow High School within this academic year.

Inverclyde Council’s convener of education and communities Jim Clocherty said: “We live in a constantly evolving technological age and recognise its importance in our everyday lives and ensuring our teaching staff and young people are well-equipped to deal with that.”

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Inverclyde Academy’s head teacher Denise Crawford said: “Since implementing the Gen+ programme for our S1 and S2 pupils, I have seen a huge improvement in their confidence and self-belief in different areas of their academic life. Although it is still early days with the Gen+ programme, I have no doubts that the programme will continue to make a positive impact on more pupils across Scotland in the years to come.”

Since launching in 2021, six local authority areas have implemented the programme in parts of their schools network.

The organisation, which is supported by funding from charity the Peter Vardy Foundation, also recently developed Gen+ Teach. This initiative brings in experts, including individuals from the University of Strathclyde Business School to co-design a learning programme for teachers.

Gen+ hopes the programme will be available across all Scottish schools within the next five years.

Sofia Villegas and PublicTechnology staff

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