28th September 2016
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Praise for educational developments

0 comments, , by , in Headlines, News

Two pieces of Shetland’s educational jigsaw are progressing well, elected members have heard.

Ongoing work on the new Anderson High School has been praised by one councillor with a wealth of experience in the construction industry.

There's a bright new landmark on the Lerwick horizon – the Anderson High School construction site. This photo, taken from a drone, shows how the lighting rigs, supplied by DH Marine, allow work to continue after dark.

There’s a bright new landmark on the Lerwick horizon – the Anderson High School construction site. This photo, taken from a drone, shows how the lighting rigs, supplied by DH Marine, allow work to continue after dark.

Meanwhile, “virtual academies” run as part of the Shetland Learning Partnership have proved popular with youngsters seeking vocational experience.

West Side councillor and qualified architect, Frank Robertson, said work on the AHS – the council’s flagship project being run by Morrison Construction – is of an “extremely high standard”.

“This will be my 40th year in the construction industry, and it is well managed and particularly conscientious of safety measures,” he told fellow members of today’s education and families meeting.

“I think we’re going to have a very impressive building when it is completed.”

His comments came after an update during the meeting by director of children’s services, Helen Budge, who highlighted a second large “tower crane” which has been brought in to help in the £55.75 million school and hall of residence.

Morrison’s are busily working on the second floor of the new school, with work ongoing on the walls and columns despite the difficult weather over January.

Plans are also taking shape to begin on the outer “skin” of the building.

Meanwhile, the delta-shaped ground slab of the pupils’ accommodation block is in place, and the steel frame for that building is beginning to take shape.

“At the moment we feel that is progressing as we would like to see it,” said Mrs Budge.

Members also heard youngsters taking part in the Shetland Learning Partnership were benefiting greatly from the experience.

The so-called virtual learning academies were established as a way of offering school pupils new ways to progress. The academies have been designed to give youngsters practical experience before they reach school-leaving age.

Employers have been getting on board to help give senior pupils the skills they will need in the workplace.

Mrs Budge said 11 youngsters had chosen to do an engineering course, while two were studying in health and social care.

She added a third course, in built environment, was being added to the curriculum, and had been included in an options booklet.

“Pupils are enjoying it and finding it beneficial. One parent said to me that her boy would not have stayed on at school had he had just an academic course.”

She added the learning partnership was due to be featured in a Holyrood publication on education.

Chairwoman Vaila Wishart told the committee the learning partnership was something the authority could be rightly proud of.

“I think it’s one of the developments that we can be really pleased about. It’s quite advanced and the rest of the country don’t necessarily have the same opportunities to offer young people.”

AboutRyan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

View other stories by »

Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.