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Positive Inspection for Sgoil Bhaile a’ Mhanaich agus Sgoil Àraich

Positive Inspection for Sgoil Bhaile a’ Mhanaich agus Sgoil Àraich Recognising Very Good Practice

Education Scotland has published the report of the April 2024 inspection of Sgoil Bhaile a’ Mhanaich agus Sgoil Àraich carried out in conjunction with the Care Inspectorate.

The Education Scotland HMI report recognises many positive strengths of the school with inspectors evaluating Sgoil Bhaile a’ Mhanaich’s performance as ‘Good’ or ‘very good’ across all four measured criteria. The school was particularly recognised for its work in supporting wellbeing, equity and inclusion, which was evaluated as ‘very good’.

The Care Inspectorate report evaluated the Sgoil Àraich as ‘Good or ‘Adequate’ across all categories. The report notes two requirements and one area for improvement for the Sgoil Àraich. These can be viewed in full on the Education Scotland Website.

The Education Scotland inspection team found the following strengths in the school’s work. Unless stated, these apply to Gàidhlig (Gaelic) and English Medium Education across all stages.

  • Children demonstrate a strong understanding of emotional and physical wellbeing. They enjoy very positive relationships with staff. Children feel safe, supported and nurtured.
  • In the sgoil, children focus well on a range of motivating real-life learning activities. Children respond well to teachers’ enthusiasm for teaching. This contributes to children making positive progress in their learning.
  • In Gàidhlig Medium Education, children benefit from strong immersion experiences that result in their high-quality fluency in Gàidhlig. Across the sgoil, children talk articulately and with confidence to a range of audiences.
  • The staff team, led by the head of sgoil, work well together and with partners, to provide a range of meaningful opportunities and insights into the world of work. In the sgoil, children recognise how personally and in work they can contribute to sustaining Gàidhlig language and culture.

The following areas for improvement were identified and discussed with the head of sgoil and representatives from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar

  • Senior leaders and practitioners should plan learning in the sgoil-àraich to enable children to be immersed in Gaelic, follow their interests, and be curious and creative. All parents/carers requiring Gàidhlig Medium Education should have a total immersion place for their child in the sgoil-àraich.
  • Senior leaders and staff should raise further children’s attainment, particularly at Curriculum for Excellence first level.
  • Senior leaders and staff should continue to develop the curriculum, including play-based learning, Gaelic (Learners) and technologies.
  • Senior leaders and staff should ensure that all children have leadership roles. Children need to be aware of the resulting skills from all opportunities for achievements.

Donald Macleod, Chief Officer for Education & Children’s Services, said:

“I am pleased to note the positive outcome of the joint inspection of Sgoil Bhaile a’ Mhanaich agus Sgoil Àraich, especially in the recognition of the ‘Very Good’ evaluation of ensuring wellbeing, equity and inclusion. I wish to acknowledge and thank the staff, children and parents of for their work and contribution to the inspection. Comhairle nan Eilean Siar’s education department will now work closely with Education Scotland, the Care Inspectorate as well as School and Sgoil Àraich staff to ensure that the areas of improvement noted in the report are met.”

The full report is available on the Education Scotland Website.