YPI Scotland

Two local authorities have appointed Primary Science Development Officers (PSDOs) to lead upon the development of STEM learning in primary schools.

Midlothian, and East Renfrewshire have recently joined the national RAiSE network.

RAiSE (Raising Aspirations in Science Education) is a programme of The Wood Foundation, Scottish Government, Education Scotland, and participating local authorities which empowers primary practitioners with the confidence, skills, and networks to develop and deliver motivating and engaging STEM experiences.

Laura McCafferty, National Education Officer for RAiSE, said:

“It is a pleasure to welcome these new authorities to our network as we expand our footprint throughout Scotland.

“In our collective drive to become a STEM nation, we firmly believe that stoking the natural curiosity of our youngest learners can inspire them with the confidence to continue their love of STEM through their education and beyond.

“To do that we need teachers with access to the right training, resources, support, and opportunities to bring STEM to life in their classrooms. RAiSE lays these foundations in a very local way, supported by a national network and strategy.”

Twenty two of Scotland’s 32 local authorities have now benefitted from the investment which funds the placement of PSDOs for a two-year period to develop a strategy, action plan, build networks and partnerships, develop resources, and deliver professional learning, acting as a central point of contact for STEM learning locally.

Through recent surveying, more than 80% of practitioners said the programme challenged pupils in their learning, and that they had received support for developing pupils’ skills for learning, life, and work. They also said pupils’ aspirations had increased and that they had received support to build their own confidence, skills, and knowledge of STEM.