Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Children and Families Central Support Services and FanFare Concert

Spent the whole morning at the Central Support Services offices for the Children and Families Department down at Macdonald Road ... a really wide variety of central services are based here (within the old Broughton High School building I think?) and I'm more convinced than ever that very few realise the scale and quality of provision that is provided:
  • Psychological Services
  • Visiting Teaching and Support Services (VTSS)
  • Hospital and Outreach Teaching Services (HOTS) ... I know ;-((
  • English as an Additional Language (EAL)
  • Neighbourhood Support Coordinators
  • Education Welfare Service
  • The e-Team
  • Information and Learning Resources

It's near-impossible to get across, in a few paragraphs, the breadth and depth of these services that are provided to all schools across the city. They all seemed to be providing really excellent back-up to schools - I'm not going to contest there aren't issues: most significant of which is currently the sheer pressure of demand on some of the services; in particular EAL and the Neighbourhood Support Coordinators. But, I was hugely impressed by the staff I met and the brief glimpse I got of the work they are doing.

I can't help but share a little moment of excitement (not that I knew it at the time!) that happened when I was talking to the Neighbourhood Support Coordinators ---- all of whom are female, and one of whose number was obviously quite pregnant ... you've probably guessed it, yes she left the room in a bit of a hurry and I discovered much later that the baby was born not long afterwards (some 2 months early and only weighing in at 4lbs 2oz!). I'm relieved to say that both are apparently doing well and the jokes about my effect on women haven't stopped since word got out ;-))

And the day only got better - really - as I had the real pleasure of going to my first FanFare Concert this evening, at the Usher Hall. It's an annual event where the best of Edinburgh School music is showcased. I was really, really impressed - especially by the rendition of my favourite Killers' track "All These Things That I've Done"!

There was a real eclectic mix of music; from classic to rock to gospel, with much more in between! I went, briefly, backstage at the end of the event and the pure excitement of the young people was completely uplifting ... they knew, as I did, that the event had been a huge success.

Great evening ... especially for a certain Neighbourhood Support Coordinator ;-))

No comments: