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I am struck by the lack of perspective. All over the country - all over the western world in fact - we are struggling to maintain the services we have built up to maintain a decent standard for our mo

Well put. Small communities require services firstly to survive and certainly to prosper. Do people not read the news fact people buy houses and moved to areas only if the have decent services of whic

First post   Really interesting to read all the views and information on the problems effecting the more rural schools of Shetland, for my own family the closing of Aith will effect us alot.   Where w

How can da SIC justify closing country schools and spend multi millions on a new school in lerwick.

I have nothing against lerwick but it seems cuts come from outwith lerwick every time this has to stop.

If you want to get in contact with me about this matter please Tel Garry on



I don't have anything against Lerwick or the new AHS, all children in shetland can benefit from it if they continue with their education, a new school has been spoken about for decades.


My concern is that this is not the right time to be building it.


James Gray, head of Finance, stated in the Mid Term Financial Plan that there was a possibility that money would have to be borrowed to complete the new AHS project.


I do wonder if this is wise in the current financial climate. But presumably he is the expert.

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The Council won't stop until there's one school for all of Shetland, they're doing it by stealth, and not because its necessarily what the majority of Shetlanders want, nor that it is necessarily the "best thing", but because they and/or the Government have a preconceived idea (for whatever reason) that one school is the "way it has to be", and they are bloody mindedly and blindly seeing it through at all costs.

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when my daughter attended the high school she was studying higher art. got a grade1 at brae. because she was unable to stay behind after school (teacher wanted her to stay until after the last bus) and only having one car that was in use she was given up on by the teacher.


the standard of education is good were ever our children attend but i know my other children are getting a more personalised education at aith than if the were at the Anderson.


so i hope when this new school is built they realise that the children from outwith lerwick need to have the same access to the wider activities that school life provides.


if not then its not as the chair of education claims that it will provide a better education for all the children. it will provide a second class one for the country children. which will be a very retro-step move.

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There would then be a policy available to show that. Perhaps it is market forces. As some on here rant about profits and cost effectiveness over social issues, perhaps there is a tax saving plan. There are some who would see this as the right way to go.

In reality, there are forces involved. Generally, from one side. I wonder how many communities have spoken about taking on education themselves, it has happened elsewhere. Though, we seem to have lost the Big Society spin as that started not to be working, this is evident in the policies shown to us today.


I doubt very much that there is a policy to shut all the schools in Shetland, unless of course you think the new school in Lerwick can accommodate over 4000 pupils of all grades.


Mixing the sh1te me thinks.







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a) You do not live in Shetland.


B) Popping back for a few days now and then wearing rose tinted specs clouded with memories of your youth, gives you a very warped take on what is here now.


c) You disagree with my post, that's cool, I would worry about my mental state if you agreed with me. My post is my opinion, you know, the Shetlink tag line, "share information, share resources and communicate ideas", its not a statement of fact, and whether folk agree with it, disagree with it, or couldn't give a toss, I don't care. I have a right to hold any opinion I see fit, and am permitted to express it (Shetlink Mods permitting) here.


....and quite frankly, had you read, and understood my post, you would realise that the waffle you have just posted is not only irrelevant but inapplicable to what I posted.


Now, feel free to continue with posting more irrelevant waffle, as of course we know you simply must have the last word.

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There are some things we do agree on, not that I would think that that is wrong. Sadly, you do, perhaps. Alas, that could be for a number of reasons, though, I will not speculate.


Putting a pre-requisite on who can and cannot have an opinion sounds quite wrong. Regardless of where I live or how many times I visit, I still have an interest. I share it here, on this site used by a very small number of similar folk, who have an interest, apart from purveying second hand goods or other services. Yet, to have a go at my opinions because I have a go at yours, then to complain about it, is slightly amusing. Alas, these are my opinions. Had you read my post, you would see what I was getting at. Seriously, not to withstand the lecture every time I post something that does not conform, this is really just a sounding board for some, and of course a means of communication. I am surprised you go at the lengths you do to chastise folk sometimes. That however, is your prerogative. To reply how I see fit, surely is mine. At least tempers are not lost, lesser folk who contunue with such banter on here are known to slip into abuse and intimidation, though we both have dipped toes in said pool, it still, as ever is great fun. The real work goes on outwith the confines of this space, as you know.

Now, I have gone to great lengths to speak how I see fit, I can only react to what I see and hear, not just what is mentioned by us anons here but elsewhere where folk have real names and a solid form. :wink:


I have yet to see the policy that requires that all 4000+ children and young adults in education can all be accommodated in the one building. For a start, where would they all be housed?


If the new school however can accommodate the very best of educational needs, that is well equipped for the modern child, would you not want that, there would be no way really of replicating that throughout, simply because of cost. in 2010, 9% of school levers went onto the dole or another non work/education. Out of the 29 who of them, 16 came from the High.


It would be a massive thing to be able to insist all children are educated in one place, I wonder how many 7 year olds however may be damaged by such policies, if they do exist.


Communities should be more involved and have a say. Though, some of the suggestions and wants may put others at a disadvantage, though, we would all want the best.


Although I disagree with the wholesale use of legislation to convert schools, perhaps academy schools, or independent schools may play a part. They would then have nothing to do with the council except to rent buildings from. Then folks would be able to control exactly what goes on. Community schools seem to be subject to the whim of councils. It may be something to push if able.


Though I bet there will be another theory put forward for reasons why communities should not take control, after all, their childrens education, to them, must be paramount.

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peat we asked the scottish goverment about free schools ect. the only option for us is either private or state school. no local takeovers allowed.


i was at the meeting when the chair of the education committee told us that she really did not care what we said she will close Aith, Sandwick, Whalsey and of course the outer skerries secondary department. Really one very arrogant woman.


after that lot Unst and Yell will be the next targets. they won't admit it but they will go. unst was only saved because they were promised that they would stay open. yell because the education experts had just built a new school there.


thus leaving just brae outside lerwick providing an secondary education.


ï‚· Primary Education: we will provide primary education in all our

remote isles with pre-school provision as and when required.

We will organise primary education in establishments which are

viable both educationally and financially


their get out on primary education will be the last word in the quote.


be under no illusion that they are far from finished messing with the education of our children.


peat you are out of touch. really quite a bit out of touch on this subject.


so how would you feel about one mega school serving the whole preston and ribble area. bet you would not be in favour.


the democratic view of those effected is opposed to these schools being shut.

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We are experiencing problems here too, the closing of schools. It is not just a Shetland issue, though I doubt for one minute you think it is.

The law allows parents to teach their children at home or in a community group. If the worry of sending children to central style schools is too much, then why can the community not get together on this.

As for being out of touch, I would guess that could come from the quality of the posts here, though, when I have time, I do look at other sources.


As for mega schools, I do not think that the New Lerwick school would be a mega school similar to what could be a mega school here. If say all the school aged children of secondary age were to be educated in one campus, you would be looking at 10s of thousands. Though, I am not under any delusion that getting about 2800 children onto one site as is being suggested will be a good thing, after all, those who control the funds look at costings first. When you are presented with figures that show that in 2009/10 242 school leavers came from Anderson High out of a total of 298 total school leavers throughout. In 2009/10 50% of the school leavers from Whalsay School were neither in work, education or training, the other school leaver secured employment.


Sadly, there seems to be more action about turbines by folk than the education of their children, both of which could have an affect on the future of Shetland.


I am not against you Paul, in no way. While we are being hammered by the present UKGOV, folk will resort to all sorts of thoughts. The worry is that parents are not given the tools and funding to keep their schools in the community, that is a take over as you say, though, and independent school could be much the same thing. This however could depend on how many parents are willing to go that way, they may think it is not worth all the bother and give up. Some may not be able to give the time.

It will be the facts and figures that have to be defeated, a way to show that there is sound reason to keep schools in remote areas open. There are many rural areas of the country having to deal with this.


When you hear the date the school is to be closed, is the day you look at keeping it open by way of independence, the council will be open to off setting the costs of keeping an empty building sound.


100% support from the community is the required factor.

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Sadly, there seems to be more action about turbines by folk than the education of their children, both of which could have an affect on the future of Shetland.


Simply because VE (and SS for that matter) for most people are nice faceless monsters to bash. Schools are a bit too "real".



The issue that seems to have been lost among the inevitable heated feelings over school closures is that, as yet, to my knowledge, there has been no proposed closure other than Skerries which will actually save any money, which is, of course, the point of the exercise.


Personally, from the other parents I have spoken to, most are sensible enough to accept the councils current financial situation and what has to be done to balance the books - it is just that their intelligence is being insulted by proposals which stand to cause much disruption to their families for little , if any, financial saving.

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My fear as a parent it will end up with the council wanting centralisation of education on Shetland with one school for all, as the NHS Shetland are doing with the maternity services here, moving everything towards Lerwick and not always for the better.

Children form outwith Lerwick will miss out on after school activities and waste up 2hrs a day just travelling to from education whereas children from the town will have very little disruption to their day.


Then how long will it be after centralisation will the council then want to start charging the parents for transport costs as happened to other areas in UK do. Helen Budge has stated that SIC have no plans to do this however watch this space .

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^^ Broadly speaking yes, but the reasoning is that if some schools aren't closed, then they won't be able to fully staff them and thus the childrens education would suffer.


Makes sense, but then as I mentioned before, there has yet to be, as far as I know, any closure proposal other than the likes of Skerries which actually shows a real term saving to the whole council when all aspects are taken into account.

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^^ Broadly speaking yes, but the reasoning is that if some schools aren't closed, then they won't be able to fully staff them and thus the childrens education would suffer.



Can you explain what you mean here?


In all rural primary schools staffing levels depend on pupil numbers. For example, at the moment there are 2 primary teachers in Mid Yell for 43 pupils and one teacher in Burravoe Primary schoool. By closing Burravoe 13 pupils transfer to Mid Yell, bringing it up to a 3 teacher school, therefore more or less cancelling out any savings and perhaps making it more expensive when you add in transport costs.

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