Improving Numeracy in Scotland

At this event, we will be examining key drivers and challenges around improving numeracy levels in Scotland’s children and young people.

Numeracy as the key to attainment

Numeracy standards in Scotland continue to be below 2012 levels, with the Scottish Survey of Literacy and Numeracy (SSLN) showing an 11% drop in pupils at P4 performing well or very well in numeracy since 2014. Numeracy, along with literacy, continues to be a key focus for the Scottish Government. It acts as a benchmark for improved educational attainment as well as an effective means of tackling the socio-economic attainment gap.

The event

Join Holyrood as we examine what more we can be doing to equip pupils with the numeracy skills they need to reach their full potential. From improved support for teachers and additional funding for tackling the attainment gap, to key initiatives such as the Read Write Count campaign and Christmas Maths Challenge – we will take a comprehensive look at the issues, ambitions, and potential for raising numeracy in Scotland.

Key issues we’ll examine with you

  • The significance of falling numeracy rates within Scotland
  • The place of numeracy within Curriculum for Excellence
  • Ensuring teachers have the skills, equipment, and confidence to effectively support pupils
  • Taking an evidence-based approach to improving results
  • Embedding maths in the everyday - making it fun and relatable

Who should attend?

The event is aimed at everyone who is involved in managing and leading primary and secondary schools, teaching staff and others who are planning and delivering education for school children in Scotland.


9:15 Registration and Refreshments

10:15 Welcome and Introduction from the Chair

Tam Baillie, Former Children and Young People's Commissioner in Scotland

10:20 Session 1: Context and the Current Landscape

  • The relationship between numeracy and attainment
  • The significance of falling numeracy rates within Scotland
  • Numeracy within Curriculum for Excellence and STEM strategy
  • Addressing the gender gap for attainment in maths

Andrew Hall, CEO, Sumdog

Dr Sara Humphries, Education Research Manager, Sumdog

Andrew Gallacher, Course Leader PGDE Learning & Teaching in the Secondary Curriculum, University of Glasgow

11:20 Questions and Group Discussion

12:00 Lunch and Networking

12:40 Session 2: Improving Numeracy in and Beyond the Classroom

12:40 Hands-On Technology

  • The role of physical action and gesture in mathematics learning
  • The implications for learning technologies
  • The research behind app and physical prototype Numbuko

Dr Andrew Manches, Senior Lecturer in Learning Sciences and Director of Children and Technology Group, University of Edinburgh

13:05 Maths at the Museum

Sarah Cowie, Learning Officer (Schools), National Museums of Scotland

13:30 Good practice in Improving Numeracy

Paul McLaughlin, Headteacher, and Kirsty Boyd, Principal Teacher of Numeracy, St Ninian's High School

13:55 Questions and Discussion

14:25 Chair’s Closing Remarks

14:30 Close of Event

*Agenda subject to change


COSLA, Verity House, 19 Haymarket Yards, Edinburgh EH12 5BH | Map


Delegate rates (excluding VAT):

  • Discounted rate: 1 place £145 + VAT (Voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income of less than £1m)
  • Reduced rate: 1 place £245 + VAT | 2+ places £195 + VAT (Central government departments and agencies, local authorities, universities, colleges, NHS, police, professional associations and voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income over £1m)
  • Full rate: 1 place £295 + VAT | 2+ places £245 + VAT (Commercial organisations e.g. plc, Ltd, LLP)

For more information please email or phone 0131 285 1635

26 April 2018
United Kingdom



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