Environmental Training Team at Kersland School

On Monday 1st July the Environmental Training Team begins the huge task of overhauling the gardens at Kersland School.  The school on Ben Nevis Road in Paisley caters for children with additional support needs aged between 5 and 18 years old

Environmental Training Team at Kersland School

(Lorraine McKay Community Champion of Dobbies, Ian Williams of the Environmental Training Team and Robert Walker Community Champion of B&Q)

This fabulous project would not be possible without the generosity of Ian Williams (ETT Chief Executive) and Steve Savage (Deputy Chief Executive) who are providing the manpower and tools required

The project began as a one off offer of a garden tidy being offered as a raffle prize for Kersland School’s BBQ Fundraiser which was on Friday 21st June but soon developed into promises of a major overhaul of all the garden areas and continuing maintenance.

Tracey Clements Marketing and PR Manager for the Environmental Training Team had been in talks with the Community Champions at B&Q Paisley and Dobbies at Braehead regarding donation of plants & seeds etc to make this project a blooming success. On Tuesday 25th June 2013 Robert Walker of B&Q and Lorraine McKay of Dobbies came along to the school with kind donations of a variety of fruit trees, bulbs, seeds, soil, trays and bushes

B&Q are also helping out through their waste donation scheme providing pallets, paint, tiles and paving slabs which although unsellable will be usable in some way during the project.

Tracey Clements of the ETT said “The generosity of B&Q and Dobbies has been overwhelming. They have been so kind and we look forward to keeping in contact with them throughout the project to let them see how it is progressing”


iPad gift is boost for Paisley pupils

Pupils at a Paisley school have been given a technology boost – after they were gifted an iPad.

Kersland School – which caters for pupils with a range of additional support needs – already uses touchscreen technology to help the children communicate.

When bosses at IT consultancy Sopra Group – Renfrewshire Council’s technical partners – became aware of how the technology was helping the pupils, they kindly offered to donate an iPad to the school.

The award was made as part of the company’s commitment to rewarding innovative use of technology in the public sector.

John Bailey, Sopra Group’s Head of Local Authorities and Health, visited the school to see for himself how the gift would help the children.

There, he met Councillor Jacqueline Henry, the Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Education Policy Board, and Robert Naylor, director of the council’s Education and Leisure Services Department.

Councillor Henry said: “I was delighted to visit the school to see for myself how new technology is making it easier for the pupils to develop their social and communications skills.

“We would like to express our thanks to Sopra Group for their very kind gesture in donating the iPad.”

John Bailey said: “We believe people who take forward innovation should be rewarded and wanted to do so within Renfrewshire in a way related to the work of Sopra Group.

“We were moved by the story of how technology has helped the pupils at Kersland. It is fantastic to see how technology can make a difference to people.”

At Kersland, the pupils have been using iPads and smartboard technology to communicate their needs, to say how they are feeling, and even to order lunch.

Kersland School head teacher Michelle Welsh said: “Being able to use iPads has really increased the children’s independence.

“It’s been really positive for the children and staff, they have really taken to it, and we are delighted.

“The pupils use various pieces of technology which allow them to communicate much more independently and are really easy to use.

“All the children get something out of it and it’s been life-changing for some of them. It’s been a great opportunity.”

Kersland School

Kersland School has eXcellence factor

Teachers and pupils at Kersland School in Renfrewshire are celebrating after they received excellent marks for everything in an HMIe inspection report published today.

And the independent inspectors are so impressed that they are coming back to learn more about some of the innovative work being done at Kersland so that this best practice can be shared with other schools.

Kersland School in Paisley caters for 70 pupils with severe learning difficulties. Pupils join the school from pre-school centres and may stay until they are 18 years old.

Only two other schools in Scotland have been evaluated as excellent for all of the five quality indicators scrutinised by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Education. The indicators are: improvements in performance, learners’ experiences, meeting learning needs, the curriculum and improvement through self evaluation. Read more