'Nurture' classes for vulnerable schoolchildren hailed as success story

Most of the children taking part in the 68 'nurture groups' in primary schools are from the poorest areas of the city.

‘Nurture’ classes for vulnerable Glasgow schoolchildren hailed as success story iStock

Special “nurture” classes for Glasgow’s most vulnerable pupils who struggle in mainstream lessons are taking place in dozens of schools.

The scheme, which has been described as a “fantastic success story,” gives extra support to kids who find it hard to learn in a classroom, a council meeting heard this week.

Most of the children taking part in the 68 “nurture groups” in primary schools are from the poorest areas of the city.

The aim is to give extra support to kids who find it difficult to learn in the classroom.

The groups involves a nurture teacher working with the pupils who also runs a weekly session with parents allowing them to take part in an activity with their child.

There are 17 primary school nurture groups in the north west of the city, 27 in the north east and 24 in the south.

A number of nurseries and 16 high schools are also running nurture bases according to a paper presented to the education committee.

In secondary schools a teacher and support for learning worker engage with the pupils in the morning for the first two periods

Speaking at the education, skills and early years city policy committee, Councillor Graham Campbell, SNP, said “the nurture approach in Glasgow has been the key to the attainment gains it has had over the last 15 years.”

Pointing out staff from other councils are being trained in Glasgow’s nurture methods, He added: “We are beginning to spread this message out there to other education authorities.”

Councillor Jill Brown, Labour, said: “The nurture journey in Glasgow over the last 20 years is such a fantastic success story and “it is brilliant to see this paper.”

Explaining how the method supports children, the council paper said: “A range of activities can take place in a nurture group which help to build positive relationships and help children to make attachments to key people in school. This provides a safe base in which development in learning, social and emotional skills can take place.”

Glasgow first began nurture support in 2001 and work is continuing to build on progress to look at ways for all children to benefit from the approach.

Schools can access training to help develop “nurturing communities” as part of a vision for Glasgow to be a “nurturing city.”

A council paper presented to the committee said: “To support our progression with the Nurturing City vision we have also developed, in partnership with Education Scotland, a framework for self-evaluating nurture practice. Applying Nurture as a Whole School Approach is now widely used across Glasgow Establishments to direct their nurture journey.”

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