National Improvement Hub – Sketchnotes

Education Scotland has been sharing some ‘Sketchnotes’ on the National Improvement Hub as a way of sharing effective practice and inspection highlights.

Education Scotland state:

“Education Scotland wanted to find some new ways of sharing effective practice identified during inspections. Using a sketchnote is a popular approach for providing a visual journey of activities. Sketchnotes provide a visual description of the practice and approaches which HM Inspectors have observed during scrutiny activities and are worth sharing more widely.”

Each ‘sketchnote’ example is accompanied by further background information, video interviews with staff, PDF examples and reflective questions to use individually or as a staff team to help you reflect on your own practice and identify any areas for improvement.

Click here for the full list of ‘sketchnote’ examples available on Education Scotland National Improvement Hub

ELC examples provided include:  

Cornton NurseryOwnership of vision, aims and values

 Riccarton Early Childhood CentreUsing data to ensure progress

Green Acres Nursery –  Transition processes at all stages

Draft Quality Framework for Early Learning and Childcare

A quality framework for early learning and childcare services

Care Inspectorate is looking for feedback on the draft quality framework for early learning and childcare services.

All early learning and childcare services, including nurseries, playgroups, family centres, childminders, and out-of-school care, are being invited to comment on the Care Inspectorate’s draft quality framework.

The framework will be used by services to evaluate how well they are doing and also by inspectors when they are inspecting services.

The short survey consists of 10 questions and will take no longer than 5 mins to complete. You can provide feedback as an individual or on behalf of an organization.

You can download the draft quality framework here.

You can complete the survey here

Closing date for ELC Inclusion Fund

Applications for the ‘Early Learning and Childcare Inclusion Fund’ will close on Monday 2 December at 12pm.

The Scottish Government’s ELC Inclusion Fund provides funding to early learning and childcare settings to support children with additional support needs to fully benefit from their funded ELC entitlement. All settings that offer ELC funded places can apply.

CLICK HERE for further information

CLICK HERE to access the online application form, case studies, and other guidance documents.

New Highland Council Safety Bulletin

Socket covers and square adapters safety information

Highland Council has released a safety bulletin on the use of socket covers which replaces the use of socket covers originally issued in 2016.

CLICK HERE to be directed to the Early Learning and Childcare in Highland blog to read the full safety information. This includes links to two very informative short videos that we encourage you to take time to watch.



Tools, resources and links to support practice

Education Scotland, National Improvement Hub: An Empowered System 

This guidance resource is for everyone involved in working together to improve children and young people’s outcomes.

Education Scotland explains:

“this is a developing resource designed to support our empowered system in its collective endeavour to improve children and young people’s outcomes. The draft jigsaw and supporting guidance explore the contributions of eight key partners in an empowered system. They encourage collaboration, collegiality and mutual respect between all partners”

The guidance resource focuses on the 8 partners to inspire empowerment and collaboration for improvement at all levels, including:

  • Empowering Parents and Carers guidance
  • Empowering Partners guidance
  • Empowering Teachers and Practitioners

For further information and access to the document visit THE NATIONAL IMPROVEMENT HUB

Improving children and young people’s understanding of their wellbeing

Children in Scotland was commissioned by the Scottish Government to produce this guidance resource with the aim to support children and young people’s understanding of their wellbeing.

The resource has been developed in response to the views of children, young people, teachers and practitioners who stated they would want a resource that provided activities that were ‘fun, creative and engaging’.

For those working with children in the early level, pages 6 – 23 of the resource contain a variety of different experiences to provide for children to help them explore wellbeing. All the suggested experiences focus around the story “There’s a Spider in my Hair” which is readily available online. There are also templates to support the experiences along with further reading and resources.

Click here for further information and to access the resource

Click here to access the e-book ‘There is a spider in my hair’




Parent Club

Parent Club is a new site full of helpful advice and information for parents and families with children of all ages,  for example, information on how to balance screen time supported with ’25 screen-free activities’ and ‘Tips to avoid a strop at the shop!’

This is an excellent site for settings to signpost their parents too through notice boards, social media, home links, etc. Click here to visit the site.

Safer Recruitment Through Better Recruitment Good Practice Guidance

At a time when there are so many exciting job opportunities within the Childcare sector, we thought it might be useful to remind everyone of the ‘Safe Recruitment through Better Recruitment’ guidance.

This joint resource from the SSSC and Care Inspectorate was published in 2016 as:

 “good practice guidance intended to help employers, especially those in social care, early education and childcare and social work to meet existing legislative and regulatory requirements in relation to the safer recruitment and selection of people who work with individuals who receive support and care from social services in Scotland”

Download ‘Safe Recruitment through Better Recruitment’ by clicking here. 

Family Learning in Scotland 2019 survey

Education Scotland – Family Learning in Scotland 2019 survey

Education Scotland is looking for all practitioners working with children and families pre-birth -18 years to share their views in their short online survey on family learning:

“Education Scotland is gathering information on what Family Learning programmes and professional development opportunities are being delivered across Scotland. This will help take forward the commitments in the Learning Together Action Plan and National Improvement Framework. Responses will be used to help support the quality of family learning provision and professional learning in Scotland”

The survey should take around 10 minutes to complete.

Click here to access the survey

Click here to access ‘Learning together: national action plan on parental involvement, engagement, family learning and learning at home 2018 – 2021’

Continuous Professional Learning Opportunities

Upcoming Continuous Professional Learning Opportunities (CPL) in NOVEMBER

Over the month of NOVEMBER, there are a variety of CPL opportunities across Highland. Click through the slides below and use the links to find further information and booking details about the individual sessions. 

Don’t forget to regularly check in at and for up to date information on upcoming training and new e-learning modules being added.

Education Scotland: Refreshed Narrative of CfE

Education Scotland: Refreshed Narrative of CfE

Online interactive resource

On the 9th September 2019, Education Scotland published the ‘Refreshed Narrative on Scotland’s Curriculum’. 

It sets out Scotland’s approach, revisiting the initial CfE narrative and restating the central importance of the four capacities and the knowledge, skills and attributes that our children and young people need.

The refreshed narrative has been developed with input from practitioners and serves two broad purposes:

As a single point of entry to direct practitioners to a broad range of curriculum advice

It provides a process to facilitate both engagement with the core principles of CfE, and the development of practices to embed them.

The ‘narrative’ is an online interactive resource and provides clear links to further guidance and resources to support practitioner understanding and inspired implementation of CfE at all levels.

You can access the resource at:

SOSCN Regional Events

SOSCN is pleased to confirm that the Scottish Government’s OSC team will be joining them at their regional events for OSC services to have the opportunity to help shape the next development stage of the National Framework for Out of School Care in Scotland.

The draft framework on Out of School Care sets out what the government knows about the out of school care sector in Scotland and asks questions about what the Scottish Government can do to support families in accessing high quality, flexible and affordable services which benefit children and parents and carers

Tuesday 5th November, 7 – 9pm @ Kintail House, Inverness IV2 3BW

Wednesday 6th November, 10am – 12.30pm @ Kintail House, Inverness IV2 3BW                               (Registration opens at 9.30am)

Please complete a booking form and return it to [email protected]

Click here to access further information and booking form

Early Learning and Childcare

National Induction Resource 

The Scottish Government’s ‘National Induction Resource for ELC’ is a comprehensive tool to support robust induction for new starts in ELC as we progress with 1140 hours expansion. 

Along with step by step advice and information, there are links to useful free or low-cost CPL inks including:

These are also useful resources for practitioners wishing to refresh or develop aspects of practice.

Click on the picture to download the resource

Young carers: seen, heard and supported e- learning modules

Connecting Young Carers work with 5 – 24-year olds who are in a caring role for a family member. They provide support, days out, fun opportunities and the chance to meet other young people in similar situations.

A survey carried out in Highland in 2017, estimated that 11.5% of young people were carrying out some sort of caring role. The actual number of young carers is suspected to be much higher as many young people are not being or wishing to be identified as having a caring role.

Connecting Young Carers (in collaboration with CALA) have developed an e-learning module to help raise awareness amongst professionals about the role of young carers, the challenges this can present for the young carers and ‘The Carers (Scotland) Act 2016’.

A young person’s version of the module is also available to be used by secondary aged pupils. This module can be accessed individually by young people or as part of a group to increase their awareness of young carers.

Both modules are a blend of media presentation (including short video clips, animations, useful handouts to download and interactive tasks – all designed to suit individual learning styles.

Connecting Young Carers are launching both modules on Friday, 6th September 2 – 3.30pm at Eden Court Theatre. Spaces are still available at the launch and can be booked at:

Alternatively, if you would like further information or to register and complete the free module, visit:

For further information about Connecting Young Carers, visit their website at: