A STIRLING nursery has been hailed as a shining light following the introduction of a new method of sharing highly effective practice introduced by Education Scotland.

The inspectorate body has introduced artistic ‘sketch note’ drawings and blogs as a way to give families and communities a better understanding of the achievements and success of their local school or nursery following an inspection.

And Cornton Nursery is leading the way for Stirling after being praised in the new sketch note format for providing outstanding care, education and growth for its children and their families.

The sketch note was designed to showcase examples of highly effective practice identified during inspection in a more visually appealing and easy-to-access format.

The design is supported by the production of a blog by the school or nursery, which gives the story of their inspection experience.

The pair can then be used to spread the information to other schools, and the wider community allowing other establishments across Scotland to learn and benefit from what was picked up during inspection.

In their visit to Cornton last year, Education Scotland inspectors identified highly-effective practice in the approaches the nursery took to developing a shared vision for change and improvement.

The government body praised the nursery for ensuring the whole community took ‘ownership of their shared vision’ while staff described how they combat some of the economic, health and social challenges faced by some of their families through a shared vision and moral purpose to secure progress for all.

Head of nursery, Kate O’Neil, said in the blog: “We invest a lot of time in really getting to know the needs and aspirations of our children and families within our diverse community. 

"This enables us to develop a strong shared vision which drives training and nursery improvements, in order to secure children's progress.

“Our community constitution is signed by families at home visits and by children at the start of each year.

"This states that by offering a nurturing environment and promoting accountable behaviours all children and adults will participate in play, learning and communication, engaging respectfully, safely, fairly, fully and joyfully.”

She added that the sketch note from the inspectorate was something that can be easily shared among families and the community.

“We have a holistic approach which focuses on care, learning, play and development for our children,” Kate said.

“We also have a robust self-evaluation process to ensure we’re more confident and responsive in offering timely help and interventions.

"The result of this is children are making real improvements in their learning and play and families also feel the benefits at home.”

Stirling Council’s Children and Young People committee convenor, Councillor Susan McGill, added: “This recognition for Cornton is so well deserved for the effort, dedication and application of their staff.

“Our nurseries and schools across the council area are a real source of pride for everyone in Stirling and it is right their hard work is highlighted like this. Well done to the full team and community.”

Education Scotland Chief Inspector, Gayle Gorman, said: “As we strengthen our approaches to inspection I want to make sure that we make the best use of evidence gathered through inspection to promote improvement. 

“Our sketch note approach signals a new way for us to share the work that is going on every day in settings, schools and services across the country that are making a real difference to children’s learning.”

Janie McManus, Interim Director of Inspection at Education Scotland, added: “We designed these sketch notes to ensure that we that we not only recognise, celebrate and share the success stories happening in services and establishments across Scotland, but that we share these messages in an engaging and innovative way. 

“The sketch note and the blog tell the story of the outstanding practices inspectors identified at Cornton, and I want to thank everyone at the nursery and Stirling Council for working with us to share this more widely, ensuring the benefits are felt across the country.”