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Welcome to the May bulletin - thanks for all the contributions, it is another jam packed issue. We have made a couple of changes to the bulletin layout to make it easier to read, any feedback welcome! 

Climate Change issues are finally being taken seriously by the popular media, and the Scottish Government is taking notice. Whether you are a protester or a politician, a scientist or storyteller, educator or student; we are all part of an education network which has sustainability at its core. Putting it into practice is a challenge, but as a diverse network we can work together for a better future. 

Best Wishes, 

Norah Barnes,
Bulletin Editor

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NEWS & EVENTS from LfS Scotland

Update from the Learning for Sustainability Scotland Steering Group 

There was a high pitching twittering and a flit through the garden, with a joyful swoop over the adjacent field. Yes! The swallows are back. Every year they return in the last week of April or just into the month of May. Each bird weighs only about as much as a slice of bread, yet they are valiant travellors, journeying annually from Scotland to South Africa and back again. They represent ecological global connectivities, flying around the globe back to the very same location in which they were fledged.  

We have been exploring local and global contexts for learning for sustainability this month. The gathering responses locally and globally to the Climate Emergency highlight the critical place of education and learning. Recent blogs on our website include Director, Pete Higgins, on education and the climate strikes and Member Rob Bushby unpicking the meaning of LfS. You can also read our response to the Scottish Government’s Good Food Nation consultation.

There’s an urgent need to change the stories that we live by to bring about the shift towards greater sustainability. In response to feedback from members at this year’s AGM in January we have organised a practical workshop, Storytelling about Sustainability, with Alette Willis on June 19th. Sign up  HERE. 

Our partnership work on the British Council Connecting Classrooms programme for Scotland’s schools 2018 - 2021 is well underway, with opportunities for clusters of schools to apply for up to £36,000 of funding towards local and global partnerships for LfS.  As part of this programme many teachers are already participating in our Making Connections through Learning for Sustainability courses, teachers can sign up HERE for the next starting on September 13th.  In partnership with EAUC Scotland, we are running a workshop on 20th May for those working in Further and Higher Education to explore Alternative and innovative pedagogies Book your place HERE. 

We were very pleased to be nominated by UK’s UN Commission for the UNESCO ESD Japan prize 2019.  Regardless of outcome, this nomination alone demonstrates the achievements of LfS Scotland, with the testimony of past participants illustrating programme impacts. 

As the month of May unfolds, we smell the rain on warm soil, we think of summer travel, and we recognise our global citizenship. We are all connected, across our beliefs and cultures, sharing the joy of celebratory stories and commiserating over news such as the effects of the latest cyclone in Mozambique. We may feel fragile, but if the swallow can circle the earth, perhaps we can be inspired to think about the links and patterns of connection we have with other communities far as well as near. 

“There will come soft rains and the smell of the ground, 

And swallows circling with their shimmering sound…”  

Sara Teasdale, poet, 1884-1933

Rehema White, Chair LfS Scotland Steering Group
Betsy King, Development Manager, LfS Scotland (

Are you one of the many schools or learning settings in Scotland that are working towards a whole school approach to learning for sustainability? There are many others who need to hear your story. 

Click here to find out more about the latest in the #ThisisLfS  series with insights from Saltersgate School, Midlothian and Culloden Academy, Highland.  

Our members would love to learn from your experiences too. To get involved  and share your #ThisisLfS story please email  Betsy King. 

Discover the power of Learning for Sustainability!
Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning is an exciting new programme for Scottish
schools. Supporting you to develop a whole-school approach to Learning for Sustainability, Connecting Classrooms:

  • Helps young people develop the values, attitudes, knowledge, skills and confidence needed to participate as active citizens striving for a sustainable and equitable world
  • Provides meaningful, inclusive, real-life learning that brings Curriculum for Excellence and other educational priorities to life
  • Enables collaboration between schools in your local area and across the globe on the Sustainable Development Goals
Connecting Classrooms also provides a wealth of support to help schools, including:
  • Access to free support from local experts to help you plan and deliver your activities
  • Generous funding to help you bring your vision to life
  • Free professional learning opportunities to help you develop your own practice: all of which are aligned with the new national Model for Professional Learning, and the GTCS Professional Standards.
Get in touch at or call us on 0131 650 9731 to find out more about how we can help.
‘Connecting Classrooms’ is delivered in collaboration with the British Council, Learning for Sustainability Scotland, the IDEAS network, the Scotland Malawi Partnership and the University of Edinburgh.


Events & Dates for your diary
Events in Scotland

1. Impact Summit 2019, Glasgow, Wed 15th May
FutureX's Impact Summit 2019 showcases speakers who provide inclusive, sustainable and values-led solutions for tackling global challenges, bringing together some of the brightest minds. 

2. What’s your Strategy? - Sustainable Scotland Network Member Event, Edinburgh, 29th May
This SSN event will explore how strategies can mobilise leadership and generate a sense of direction and commitment on climate action and delivery of Scotlands Climate Change Plan.

3. The National Active Travel Conference, Edinburgh, 12th June
The “Widening Access to Active Travel" theme will tackle topical themes including accessibility, technology and transport poverty. Sign up for an alert when registration is open.

4. World Forum on Climate Justice, Glasgow Caledonian University,  19 -21 June 
This inaugural World Forum will bring together civil society groups, academics, businesses and policymakers to foster new thinking in climate justice advocacy, research and practice. 

5.  European Week for Waste Reduction 16-24 November
This European initiative promotes the implementation of awareness-raising actions about sustainable resource and waste management during a single week. There are opportunities to win awards – it would be great to see a Scottish organisation winning! Email here

Schools Sector

6. Change the Grounds Convention, Glasgow, 21st May
A free event with hands on workshops to help empower you to use simple and easy ways to lead outdoor learning, and how to use your existing outdoor space more effectively.

7. Outdoor Classroom Day, 23rd May
A global campaign to celebrate and inspire outdoor learning and play. On the day, thousands of schools around the world take lessons outdoors and prioritise playtime. 

8. Social Enterprise in Education Awards, Inverness, 29th May
The SE Academy are inviting education practitioners wanting to learn more about Social Enterprise in Education to visit their Social Enterprise Schools marketplace and awards event. There is a free ‘Introducing Social Enterprise’ CPD workshop.

9. World Ocean Day for Schools, 7th June
World Ocean Day for Schools is back again for the second time, with ambitious plans. They are on a mission to build a better and deeper experience, with the best curriculum linked resources.

10. STEM and Food Event, Royal Highland Show, 22nd June
You will hear from experts in the sector and go on a tour of the showground to find out more about livestock production, potato production and machinery technology.  The free event is open to secondary teachers engaged with STEM and participants will gain access to the show for the day.  

11.  Call for LtL School Grounds and Outdoor Learning Conference , Stirling, Sept 2020  
LtL is privileged to be organising the International School Grounds Alliance (ISGA) 3 day conference in Stirling next year. This event will bring together the best in outdoor learning and play in school grounds and beyond. Please get in touch if you are interested in being involved. 

Tertiary Sector

12. ESD Topic Support Network, University of Edinburgh, Mon 20th May 
The theme for the meeting is ‘Alternative and innovative teaching methods and assessments’. It will cover a range of different pedagogical techniques; and interesting case studies where innovative ESD teaching methods and assessments are already being employed.

13. College Expo 19, Perth College UHI, 12-13th June
The College Expo19 is a celebration of college excellence, a hub for staff development and practical innovation, and an opportunity to participate in cutting-edge debate.

14. EAUC-Scotland Summer Forum, 24th June
The EAUC-Scotland Summer Forum will be a virtual meeting with regional hubs to allow for attendance for as many institutions as possible, limiting travel but allowing for networking. There are hubs confirmed in Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aberdeen. 


Community Sector

15. World Community Development Conference: People, Place and Power, Dundee, 24-26 June 

The nature of the relationship between people, place and power is changing and community work practices across the globe need to be able to influence these new global dynamics.

Events outside Scotland

1.  Sustainability Science Days, Finland, 9-10th May
The focus of the event is on sustainable production and consumption, which is the Sustainable Development Goal # 12  where Finland’s performance, needs to be considerably improved. 

2. Wildlife in School Grounds Conference, Leicester, 13th June 
Featuring national and international keynote speakers who specialise in wildlife conservation and school grounds, this free conference promises to be an inspiring day for wildlife professionals and educators. 

3.  INFLUENCE!, University of Manchester, 19/20th June 
By increasing the power of your personal and professional influence, this conference will empower us all to persuade, lead, motivate and inspire those around us to help combat climate change.

4. Nature Connections Conference, University of Derby,  2nd July
Sharing the latest research evidence on the links between nature connectedness, well-being and pro-nature behaviours, key themes will include: Nature Connection in Practice, in Policy Making, and Age

5. Sustainability in Higher Education Conference, Swansea, 3-4 th July 
The conference is being organised in association with RCE CYMRU which facilitates collaboration to research, develop and promote a greater understanding of sustainability. 

6. Children in Permaculture (CiP) International Conference 2019, London, 8th July  
Inspiring plenary speeches and workshops on various aspects of permaculture education with children aged 3-12 years. CiP will also be presenting at London Permaculture Festival on 7th July.


Courses & Workshops

Courses & Workshops in Scotland

Schools Sector

1. Connecting Classrooms
Connecting Classrooms offers a wealth of free local support and generous funding to help you build local and international partnerships to enhance the learning in your setting. 
The programme also offers a range of professional learning courses. The next courses on offer are:

-   23 May – Learning for the Sustainable Development Goals (contact WOSDEC)
-  13 Sep – Making Connections through Learning for Sustainability (contact
Learning for Sustainability Scotland). Email: to find out more.

2. Blue Planet Live Lesson, Secondary Schools session, 11.30 am, 14th June 
Doug Allan is a natural history cameraman and presenter on programmes including Blue Planet. As part of Keep Scotland Beatutiful’s Upstream Battle campaign, Doug will be going live on their YouTube channel to share his experiences, and talk about his work to tell the world about the issue of marine litter. 

3. Learning for Sustainability CPD Courses, Changeworks, Edinburgh, 7th June
A CPD workshop for Edinburgh school staff who wish to know more about Learning for Sustainability and how to creatively incorporate the waste or eco agenda into cross-curricular learning. Booking info here. 

4. Royal Horticultural Society Gardening for Schools Courses
The Edible Garden Edinburgh - 07 May; Aberdeen- 15 May
Grow, Cook, Eat: Dumbarton - 07 May
Explorify in the Garden with the Wellcome Trust: Edinburgh - 8th May

5. Start the Change, CPD Training, Highland One World, Inverness, 3rd June
HOW are looking for enthusiastic secondary teachers of all subjects to be part of an exciting EU global learning project. Focussing on the links between the UN Sustainable Development Goals, inequality and migration, the project aims to develop a model of active global citizenship for young people. 

6. Storytelling about Sustainability, Moray House School of Education, Edinburgh, 19th June
Changing the stories that we live by is key to bringing about the changes needed to shift us all towards greater sustainability. This practical workshop will: introduce the use and practice of storytelling in a range of LfS contexts, explore the arts of story-crafting and provide useful techniques and exercises.

7. Book your Outdoor Learning Residential for 2019
The Shieling Project is an outdoor learning social enterprise based in the amazing Glen Strathfarrar in the central Highlands near Inverness. We offer schools residentials for up to five days which give lots of fun hands on ways to understand the past and look forward to a sustainable future.

8. Is our Education Provision Racially Literate? University of Edinburgh, 19 - 21st June 
This two-day free event provides education practitioners with spaces to consider how literate you and your establishment are on matters of racial, cultural, religious and linguistic diversity. 

9. Climate Ready Classroom Project
A  one-day accredited carbon literacy training course for secondary schools which has been designed for young people aged 14–17 years, along with their teachers, and youth workers. 

10. Children in Permaculture Training of Teachers, July 10th-14th, London and April 2020, Galloway
This course will equip you with the skills, understanding and other resources necessary to lead permaculture activities with children and to lead the introductory Children in Permaculture course.  


Tertiary Sector

11. Promoting Sustainability through Powerful Communication, University of Strathclyde, 22nd May
This course will look at particular barriers and opportunities and looking at some relevant case studies.  It will then look at communicating and presenting sustainability to Management.

Community Sector

12. Seeds of Justice: A Community Health Gathering, Edinburgh, 13-14th May
The Scottish Radical Herbal Network invite you to a weekend of workshops and discussions exploring health and community, in the Edinburgh area. 

13. Training for Scottish Community Groups tackling Climate Change 
If you are a Scottish community group interested in tackling climate change the free programme of training and events provided by Keep Scotland Beautiful could help support you in your work.


UN Sustainable Development Goals
Learning for Sustainability Scotland members Taking forward the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Scotland
Schools Sector

1. Jordanhill Primary School Island Explorer Programme
Primary 4 pupils from Jordanhill Primary school have been producing some amazing work linking their poetry unit with their LfS project to reduce ocean plastics and raise awareness. This project inspired the class to spend their Spring break beach combing and cleaning up - well done! Thanks to their teacher, Caroline Beaton, for sending photos in. 

2. SDG Book Club
Read all about it! The United Nations has launched a brand new Book Club for the Sustainable Development Goals. It aims to use books as a tool to encourage children ages 6-12 to interact with the SDG principles, through a curated reading list of books from around the world related to each of the 17 SDGs in all six official UN languages.

3. Culloden Inspire, Young Enterprise Project
The S6 Young Enterprise team have been working hard all year running their YE company ‘Inspire’ and learning by doing.  Sustainability has been an integral part of their business model and throughout their business journey pupils have learned a great deal about it.  

The team recognised early on the importance of sustainability which inspired them to create and produce two products that focused on Goal 3 - good health and wellbeing.  Both the StressLess Box and Go Explore children’s card game were designed, tested, developed and marketed to promote this goal.  Goal 12 - responsible consumption and production – was also a focus for the business.  Here emphasis was placed on supporting local suppliers, using recyclable materials in both product content and packaging, using social enterprises for outsourced tasks.  

Thanks to Katie Hanson from Culloden Academy




Every month, Education Scotland produce a bulletin for learning for sustainability in schools across Scotland. You can subscribe - for free - to receive the bulletin by clicking on this link.

Schools Sector

1. Action for the Climate 
Create an issues tree which helps learn link cause and effect of climate change. Pupils are then encouraged to think about what actions they can take to mitigate the effects of climate change.

2. Nature Connection Films Youth Project with John Muir Trust
The JMT has commissioned a young film maker, Martin MacLeod, to direct, shoot and edit a series of short films to help share what young people think about their connection with nature and the outdoors. 

3. Peace Prevails Programme 
This primary school programme introduces the experience of peace into all aspects of a childs life, which lead towards and encourage an “Ethos of Peace” in every school that participates. It includes lesson plans and resources which underpin ‘Learning for Sustainability’ if embedded into the school curriculum.

To enable teachers to deliver the programme, they need to undergo either a one-day face-to-face training or 6 online training sessions. If you are interested in finding out more, email Glenda

Tertiary Sector

4. Working with your Students Union on Sustainability Guide
The virtual 'Sustainability Sharing Series' April 2019 edition discussed working with your students union or associations on sustainability. This is a best practice document from the knowledge exchanged during this session.

5. Sustainability Careers Handbooks
These guides cover the basic information a student or careers advisor would need to know about working in this sector. From building up your sustainability knowledge, to knowing where to look for jobs or interview tips, these guides cover the whole journey.

Funding & News

Funding / News

1. Celebrating Scotland’s Nature Champions  
The eighth annual Nature of Scotland Awards co-sponsored by SNH are open for applications until 4th June. Applications are being sought across nine categories, including Youth and Education.

2. New Cup Fund 
A new Cup Fund has been launched to provide one year of grant funding of between £50,000 to £100,000 to projects relating to cutting down on disposable cups. 

Schools Sector

3. New Opportunities with Eco Drama
Eco Drama is currently looking for partner schools to participate in Out to Play 2019, delivered in school playgrounds across Greater Glasgow, during Aug to November 2019. Out to Play is an award-winning project in which Drama Artists collaborate with partner primary schools and nurseries to explore the role of Drama and Storytelling in Outdoor Learning. Please email Emily to discuss. 

Eco Drama is also hosting an Out to Play CPD session for teachers and nursery leaders in Glasgow on Wednesday 8th May. The session will introduce practitioners to the project and teachers will come away with an Out to Play resource pack and ideas to develop a creative outdoor learning journey.  Book your place here.

The Whirlybird is Eco Drama’s brand new theatre show, touring across Scotland to nurseries, schools, theatres and venues throughout 2019 - an uplifting theatre show for children aged 3-7, featuring movement, music, bird song, puppetry and lots of things that spin! A perfect theatre experience for nurseries and schools wishing to connect children to nature and the outdoors. For bookings, please email here.

4. Local School Nature Grants Programme
Learning Through Landsapes grants provide an assortment of nature equipment and a two hour training session. The packages are customisable, so that you choose from a menu of items which best suit your learners. 

Tertiary Sector

5. 2019 Green Gown Awards Now Open for Applications 
Making your institution sustainable is challenging. These annual Awards recognise those institutions, both large and small, that have made a difference. Any UK and Ireland university or college can enter for free. Deadline 5th June.

6. CDN College Awards 2019 –Open for Entries!
The Awards recognise the talent, skills and achievement of colleges, their staff and their learners. They provide a valuable opportunity to recognise and celebrate the innovation taking place in colleges across the country.   There are 10 categories, including  a Sustainability Award category. Deadline 21st June. 

7. University of the West of Scotland Guardian Award
University of the West of Scotland's (UWS) Lanarkshire Campus has been crowned the winner of a prestigious 2019 Guardian University Award which recognises the most sustainable and inspiring higher education buildings in the UK.

8. Stirling University to Divest from Fossil Fuels
Stirling University has pledged to divest from fossil fuels following a student led campaign. The University said the commitment would “help the University ensure it continues to embed sustainability at the core of its business practices.” Stirling is now the 9th Scottish University to divest from fossil fuel investment.

Community Sector
Co-op Local Community Fund 
The fund helps pay for local projects to bring people together and make a difference within the community. As a Co-op member you are presented with the local projects and asked to vote on which to be funded.  Since November 2017, it has helped raise £19 million for local causes.

10. The Good Ideas Class 19
The Good Ideas Class supports budding social entrepreneurs on their journey to make social change. Some of the amazing projects this year range from Bikes for Refugees, building community for people living well with chronic pain, combating gender based discrimination to using DJing as a tool to tackle homelessness. Meet them all and find out more on the blog. 


RCE Global Network news

Global Network news

1. Save the Date: Europe Regional Meeting 13-14 Sept 2019
The Global RCE Service Centre is pleased to announce that RCE Crete will host the Europe Regional Meeting 2019 - watch this space for further details soon.


4. UN Environment Sixth Global Environment Outlook
UN Environment's Sixth Global Environmental Outlook is the most comprehensive assessment of the state of the world's environment. The report emphasises that urgent and inclusive action is needed by decision makers at all levels to protect the health of the planet and its people. 


Policy, Governance & Research

Policy, Governance & Research

1. Climate Ready Clyde
CRC has released its full assessment of the potential impacts of climate change for Glasgow City Region. It will support organisations and the public to build their own resilience to future climate change issues.

Schools Sector

2. Highland One World (HOW) Research Survey - call for participants
As part of an EU project, HOW have a piece of research being run by the University of Milan on young people's perception of migration, environmental and social justice. They need to collect a minimum of 500 survey responses from young people to ensure the research is robust for Scotland. Please help HOW by sharing the survey with any young people aged 15-24 and within your networks. 

3. John Muir Trust Repor
The latest Report from the John Muir Trust found that young people are making a significant contribution to nature conservation and their own health and wellbeing through getting involved with the JM Award. 

Community Sector

4. EAUC Scotland Annual Report
EAUC  have released their  2018 Annual Report, summarising the progress made against their Outcome Agreement with the Scottish Funding Council. The report highlights the main achievements over the year and the feedback  received, and looks ahead to the final year of our current SFC-funded programme.

5. University of Glasgow Warp-It Case Study
The University of Glasgow have been using Warp It to reuse and recycle items in their institution. As a result of Warp It the University of Glasgow has saved over £600,000, and now has good quality data that can be used to build the business case for sustainability.



1. Campaigns Manager, Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, Edinburgh
An exciting opportunity for an individual with experience of organisation of campaigns, communication and administration to manage Scotland’s largest civil society coalition. You will coordinate and manage the coalition and deliver activities to promote and support local, national and international action.
Closing date: 5pm on Monday 20th May

2. Digital Communications Officer, Scottish Wildlife Trust, Leith, Edinburgh
Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels - Developing Community Action (SSRS-DCA) is a project to secure the long-term future of red squirrels in Scotland by building capacity among communities of volunteers and land managers.

The project now offers an exciting and rare opportunity for a Digital Communications Officer to join the national team to deliver targeted digital communications to help to develop a cohesive network of active volunteers, and enhance community engagement with the project. 
Closing date: Monday, 20th May  

 3. Outdoor Community Development Worker, Barrmill and District Community Association, North Ayrshire
The Barrmill and District Community Association are a group of volunteers working to further improve the Village of Barrmill and the surrounding countryside for residents, visitors and wildlife. 

They are now recruiting a part-time Community Development Worker to assist with the creation and delivery of an events and activities program centred around the 4 themes of the Community Woodland Garden - nature, health, horticulture and history.  Closing date: Monday, 13th May  


This month's Spotlight features...
Extinction Rebellion

Extinction Rebellion Scotland staged protests all over Scotland recently as part of the national campaign to hold Governments to account.

Extinction Rebellion Scotland is a non-violent direct-action movement formed to take urgent action in the face of climate emergency and ecological catastrophe, as part of the global justice movement. 

Their demands include that the Scottish Government tell the truth about the climate crisis, enact legally binding policy measures to reduce carbon emissions by 2025, and a creation of a Scottish Citizens Assembly. 


This month's photo comes to you from....

Marine Art Competition Winners Revealed
Schools from across the Clyde Valley investigated the journey of marine litter from source to sea, measuring litter in their own community and exploring how it could end up in the ocean before expressing their findings creatively.  Overall winner was Eastmuir Primary School, Glasgow, who produced a video, and others were Aitkenhead, N Lanarkshire and Glencoats, Renfrewshire.  

Thanks to Keep Scotland Beautiful for the photo of Aitkenhead School's stunning mural. 


Would you like to see your photo here? Every month we feature a photo of the month from one of our members and next month - it could be you! With over 1200 people reading our monthly bulletin it is a wonderful place to let the Learning for Sustainability (LfS) community see all your hard work. If you have a photo you'd like to feature in 'Photo of the Month' then please email our bulletin editor Norah or check our website for details.
Learning for Sustainability Scotland (LfS Scotland) is Scotland’s UN Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development; headquartered within the University of Edinburgh. The centre is an open network where members and partners come together to undertake collaborative projects, research and advocacy that push forward Learning for Sustainability practice and policy in Scotland. LfS Scotland’s purpose is to harness the full potential of learning to create a flourishing, sustainable world.
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