Upstart meets the Minister
On 28th July, Sue Palmer and Katrina Sher of Upstart visited Angela Constance, Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, to point out that Curriculum for Excellence and other Scottish policy documents support an emphasis on health and well-being in the early years, while the Read Write Count campaign for P1 to P3 is likely to exacerbate the current drive for early formal learning. You can watch an adapted version of the presentation to the Minister here: 'Big Picture, Small Children: health, well-being … and literacy'.
Ms Constance acknowledged the strength of the research evidence but said the Scottish government must respond to public concerns about basic skills. So Upstart's first aim must be to change public perceptions about what effective educational provision for the under-sevens looks like, stressing the central significance of play.