Mirren Park School Curriculum Rationale


The curriculum at Mirren Park School encompasses a number of aspects of school, home and community life. When asking ourselves the question ‘what do we want for these young people?’ We can directly relate our values and primary aim to those of the National Improvement Framework priorities and drivers;

  • Improvement in attainment, particularly in literacy and numeracy

  • Closing the attainment gap between the most and least disadvantaged children

  • Improvement in children and young people’s health and wellbeing

  • Improvement in employability skills and sustained, positive school leaver destinations for all young people

The school caters for 30 young people between the ages of 11-18, who have complex Additional Support Needs (ASN) most commonly associated with Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties (SEBD). It offers a broad general education and a senior phase education, but one that is organised and presented in a way that is more supportive, motivational, relevant and aimed towards engaging disaffected young people. After analysing, both individually and collectively, the young people who are referred to the school we will successfully answer ‘What is it we want for our young people?’ With the following;

  • Enhanced Time Keeping

  • Increased Educational Competence

  • A Positive Self Concept

  • Improved Social Skills and Confidence

  • Emotional Stability and Self Control

  • Positive Attitude Change

  • Vocational Skills and Qualifications

  • Community Interests

What are we going to do to achieve it?

  • Ensure the improved attendance and engagement with learning of young people as a first priority; to take charge of their own life's, adopting a positive attitude change and become Responsible Citizens.

  • Improve the educational competence of young people using practical, realistic and relevant problem solving activities, increasing the potential for academic achievement. Young people should then be enabled to become Successful Learners, increasing the chances of entering into vocational training, higher or further education.

  •  Reintegrate young people back into mainstream education in line with the national policy of inclusion in education, wherever appropriate and enabling them to contribute positively to their local and wider community.

  •  Enable young people to become Confident Individuals and gain the interpersonal skills necessary to succeed in the world of work and life in general. Increase the chances of young people becoming Effective Contributors and able to be involved in any positive decision making which affects them.

  •  Improve the self-esteem and happiness of young people and help them to plan and achieve a future in the real world by making safe and positive life choices along the way.

  •  Address the social, emotional and behavioural difficulties of young people though setting high expectations and the provision of advice, support and appropriate mentors both within school, at home and in the community. 

  • Ensure the safety and security of young people by liaising with other with other relevant agencies and stakeholders, and by implementing and using a number of pastoral recording and child protection frameworks.

  •  Improve the health and fitness of young people through organised sport, outdoor education activities, health education and the provision and promotion of healthy meals and a healthy lifestyle.

What has informed our Curriculum Rationale?

National Improvement Framework

Key priorities of the National Improvement Framework

The National Improvement Framework and Improvement Plan is designed to help us deliver the twin aims of excellence and equity; galvanising efforts and aligning our collective improvement activities across all partners in the education system to address our key priorities. 

The priorities for 2018 will remain as: 

  • Improvement in attainment, particularly in literacy and numeracy

  • Closing the attainment gap between the most and least disadvantaged children and young people

  •  Improvement in children and young people’s health and wellbeing

  •  Improvement in employability skills and sustained, positive school-leaver destinations for all young people

Developing Young Workforce

Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) is a seven-year programme (2014-2021) that aims to better prepare children and young people aged 3–18 for the world of work.

This programme builds on the foundations already in place through Curriculum for Excellence. 

The headline aim of Developing the Young Workforce is to reduce youth unemployment by 40% by 2021.

Education Working For All, the final report of the Commission for Developing Scotland's Young Workforce, was published in June 2014.

The Government's response to this report was published in the form of the Youth Employment Strategy in December 2014. The strategy includes milestones for the seven-year programme across all sectors, challenging schools, colleges and employers to embrace the recommendations and implement the measures required to effect lasting change. Equality, inclusion and STEM subjects are highlighted as areas of importance with over a third of all key milestones relating to these areas.

The Youth Employment Strategy summarises the ambitions for local authorities, schools and their partners. For schools, these are summed up under the following key themes: 

  •   Expanding the offer – increasing the route from schools into employment, or further education which is closely linked to employment

  •  Promoting and shaping the offer – engaging with young people, parents, teachers and practitioners, partners and employers

  •  Supporting teachers and practitioners to develop children's and young people's learning about the world of work

  •  Providing earlier relevant, labour-market focused career advice when young people need it, leading to better outcomes

  •  Embedding meaningful employer involvement

  •  Consolidating partnership working with colleges and other training providers

  •  Young people able to access more vocational options during the senior phase of secondary school, which delivers routes into good jobs and careers, developed through effective partnership between schools, colleges, local authorities and other partners

  •  Improving opportunities and experiences for all learners, with a focus on reducing gender imbalance on course take-up

  •  Development of foundation apprenticeships in schools

  •  Stronger partnerships between employers and education.


HGIOS 4 underpins effective self-evaluation, How good is our school? (4th edition) will support practitioners and school leaders at all levels to

  • ensure educational outcomes for all learners are improving;

  •  address the impact of inequity on wellbeing, learning and achievement;

  •  consistently deliver high-quality learning experiences;

  •  embed progression in skills for learning, life and work from 3-18;

  •  further strengthen school leadership at all levels;

  •  improve the quality and impact of career-long professional learning;

  •  extend and deepen partnerships to improve outcomes for all learners; z increase learning for sustainability; and

  •  tackle unnecessary bureaucracy.