About the Inquiry
Call for views on STEM experiences in early years education
The Parliament’s Education and Skills Committee is a group of MSPs from a range of political parties that holds the Scottish Government and its agencies to account for education policy, including looking at how policy is working in practice.
We have decided to do an inquiry into STEM, in particular experiences of 3 to 7 year olds in childcare and school education.
The work will explore the extent to which STEM subjects are included in the learning experiences of those aged 3-7 and the impact that this has on young people including broadening their horizons, developing an interest in particular STEM disciplines and eventually leading to future careers.
The work will explore whether teachers have the skills, confidence and resources to teach these subjects alongside many other areas in the curriculum. It will also look at the success of different STEM initiatives, including those supported by schools, businesses, science centres etc. The Committee wants to hear about the barriers to success for these initiatives and also how best practice can be shared.
At the end of the inquiry, we will take evidence from a Government minister based on the views we have heard and then we will produce recommendations to the Scottish Government including on ways to help further support valuable STEM work.
We want to hear from you
We need to hear your views and experiences to inform this work.
Are you a primary teacher or early years teacher? Are you a primary school headteacher? Are you involved in the work of an organisation or initiative promoting STEM experiences for young people? Are you an academic with a specialism in this area? Or maybe you are none of the above but have something you want to say?
We would be really interested in your views and experiences, no longer than 4 A4 sides by Monday 13th May.
We will also be having Committee meetings considering this issue and if you would like to be involved in those meetings, please say so at the start of your submission.
Please use the below template for your submission. You are welcome to remain anonymous just tick the relevant boxes in the template.
Then just email it to: email@example.com
Calling all primary school teachers
The Committee had two teachers at a recent Committee meeting who spoke of their passion for STEM subjects and their ideas on how to make progress. They also reflected practical experiences to academics working in this area. They really enjoyed the experience and the Committee found it so valuable to hear the practical perspective on the key issues. So, we want to repeat that format during other meetings and we need primary school teachers and early years teachers to volunteer to take part.
Here is a video clip of one of the teachers talking at the session to give you an idea of what it involves.
Please email or call the Clerk to the Committee, Roz Thomson, if you would consider taking part in one of these sessions. Roz can talk you through what it would involve. Roz.firstname.lastname@example.org or 0131 348 5222 (email anytime, call Tuesdays to Fridays)
If you prefer, you could send a letter to:
Education and Skills Committee
If you find it easier to communicate in a language other than English, that's fine. We welcome written evidence in any language. We also welcome calls using the Text Relay service or in BSL through contactscotland-bsl.org/
You can also ask questions online through live chat: www.parliament.scot/live-chat
If you would like to receive this document in Braille, or British Sign Language, please contact us and let us know.
Background on work
More about what the Committee does, and why, is available here.
And here is the link to our full guide on how to submit information to the Committee.
If you have any questions about our work or making a submission, please do contact the clerks on 0131 348 5222
For anyone under 13 years of age, we will need to ask a parent or guardian to confirm to us that they are happy for the young person to send us their views. We have published a specific privacy notice for young people. In this case please contact the Committee clerks, using the contact details above, who will provide the necessary form.
To find out how the Scottish Parliament treats your personal data please read the Privacy Notice for written submissions.
We held a round table session at the Committee meeting on 27 March 2019.The purpose of the session was to scope a topic for an inquiry into STEM.
The Committee decided to hold an inquiry into STEM for 3 to 7 year olds. It launched a call for written views in April 2019 and the following submissions were received.