School attainment project funding '˜has doubled' says Swinney

Funding for school projects to improve attainment has been more than doubled to £3.5 million, Education Secretary John Swinney said.

John Swinney said that funding for school attainment projects has doubled. Picture: John Devlin

The Innovation Fund was launched in January to provide grants of up to £10,000 to schools for “creative and innovative” projects to boost pupils’ skills.

More than 400 schools will benefit from 219 projects to improve attainment, specifically around literacy and numeracy, Mr Swinney said.

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It comes as part of the Scottish Government plans to significantly close the attainment gap in the next five years.

Edcuation Secretary and Deputy First Minister John Swinney. Picture: AFP/Getty Images

The Deputy First Minister said: “We have taken a number of actions to do this, including our £750 million Scottish Attainment Challenge which includes the Innovation Fund, and later today I will publish our new Education Delivery Plan which will set out in detail how we plan to close the attainment gap.

“We received hundreds of high quality applications for the Innovation Fund and as a result, we took the decision to double the funding available to reach as many children as possible.

“I’m pleased to see the creativity shown by schools and local authorities as the successful projects range from small ones in individual schools to large scale, cross authority projects. They cover a diverse range of issues across literacy, numeracy, health and wellbeing and span a broad age range.

“We know teachers are best placed to make decisions about their schools and the Innovation Fund has empowered them to take direct action to help improve the attainment of their pupils.”

Edcuation Secretary and Deputy First Minister John Swinney. Picture: AFP/Getty Images