Jargon Buster

You'll come across lots of terms within schools that you may not be familiar with. Below we help you out with the jargon.

ANS: Additional Needs Support

Christian Focus Week (or day): the opportunity to explore the Christian faith through a theme such as charity or peace across mulitple curriculum areas for a day or a week

Curriculum for Excellence (CfE): the name for the school curriculum (see 'Get Started' for more details)

Curriculum Leaders: another name for a Head of Department, generally found in secondary schools

Depute: Senior member of teaching staff who is second in command to the head teacher

Education Scotland: The national body supporting quality and improvement in Scottish education

Enhanced Disclosure: A criminal record check for working with children obtained before 2011, now replaced by the PVG Scheme Record

E’s and O’s: Experiences and Outcomes (see the article on Curriculum for Excellence in Getting Started for details)

HMIe: School inspectorate, now under the umbrella of Education Scotland

LSA: Learning support assistant

PSD: Personal and social development

PVG: Membership of the “Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme” enables you to obtain a criminal record check and be recognised as someone who is not unsuitable to work with children or vulnerable adults

RME: Religious and Moral Education

RMPS:  Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies studied at secondary school

RO: Religious Observance events. Traditionally an assembly, but under the guidelines for RO there is scope for some genuine creativity. See article for more detail.

SMT: Senior management team

Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) : They provide the formal qualifications gained by pupils in schools

Transitions: The move from P7 to S1

Can’t find the word or acronym that keeps tripping you up?  Either contact us or have a look at the SQA website

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School Chaplains

Every non denominational school has a theoretical link to a local Church of Scotland, and a minister who is ‘School Chaplain'. In reality, this can vary enormously. Some Head Teachers prefer not to have a Chaplain; some ministers feel that working in schools is not their gifting. Chaplaincy can just involve leading an occasional act of RO, or it can become much more developed. A team, perhaps from different churches, can provide a chaplain (lay or ordained) for each year group. This team can have an ongoing pastoral role in the lives of the pupils, and take part in lessons and other school activities.

It is always worth discovering if there is a Chaplain, and having a conversation with him or her. There may be current projects that need help. It may be that the Chaplain finds school’s work a duty rather than a joy, and would be delighted to have others alongside them. At the very least it is courteous to inform them that there are other local Christians who are looking to serve and build links. We all follow Christ, striving for unity in our work in spite of any differences is honouring to God and a better witness to the school.