George Heriot’s School has become the first school in Scotland to achieve the SAPERE Gold Award for its teaching of philosophy.
Following a recent assessment by SAPERE, this accolade follows hot on the heels of Heriot’s being named Scotland’s Highest Achieving School by the Sunday Times in November 2019.
SAPERE is an internationally recognized charity based in Oxford, which promotes Philosophy for Children throughout the UK.
George Heriot’s, based in Edinburgh, embarked on teaching philosophy in its junior school seven years ago.
A spokesman for SAPERE said: ‘George Heriot’s is an outstanding example of how Philosophy for Children (P4C) has the potential to transform a school. We were impressed by the unusually large team of well-trained and highly experienced P4C facilitators in the Learning Enhancement Department.
‘This team has been an incredible on-site training and coaching resource and is testament to the fact that P4C is now embedded across many areas of the curriculum and ethos of the school’
SAPERE also noted that: ‘the significant impact of having the majority of pupils in a large school with experience of philosophy from nursery to primary seven cannot be understated.’
Heriot’s is now recognised as the leading school in Scotland in the teaching of philosophy to children and has hosted training events to share its best practice in this area with schools across the country and in Europe.
Sara Gordon, speaking on behalf of George Heriot’s, said: ‘This is the culmination of several years of hard work and enthusiasm from pupils and staff throughout the Junior School.
‘We are delighted to have been recognised in this way and our pupils’ enthusiasm for philosophical thinking continues to enhance all areas of their learning.’
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