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The Speaker for Thusday 6th March, 2014  George Anderson,

Communications Manager, Sistema Scotland.

Subject: "Transforming Lives with Music"
George Anderson lives in Leith. He is a writer and freelance communications consultant and he has a Masters in Creative Writing from Glasgow University.
In 2007 he was running the press office at the Edinburgh International Festival when the Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela [named after the national hero of the early 19th century when that country struggled to gain independence from the Spanish Empire], an orchestra comprised of young musicians, played sensational concerts at the BBC Proms in the Albert Hall and at the Usher Hall. Through that contact at the Edinburgh Festival, George became involved in the fledgling Sistema Scotland charity and he is one of the small team who established the Venezuela-inspired Big Noise            
orchestras in Raploch, Stirling and in Govanhill here in Glasgow. George handles press and public relations for the Sistema Scotland organisation. A former journalist, he currently works as a writer and as a PR consultant specialising in the arts and conservation. He has worked for amongst others Scottish Natural Heritage, The Big Lottery Fund and the Edinburgh International Festival.
The Speaker for Thursday 6th February, 2014  Dr Sue Ellis, Reader in Education, University of Strathclyde.                 
Subject: "Poverty and Literacy Attainment in Scotland:
Dr Sue Ellis researches how literacy research, policy development and implementation interact with, and impact on, teacher development and pupil learning. This involves understanding how the local policy environments of schools and local authorities both shape and are shaped by, national literacy policy frameworks to impact on teachers’ classroom practices. She has a strong commitment to knowledge exchange and to research that directly supports improved literacy outcomes for pupils through the development of better policy and practice. The recurring themes in her work concern literacy and social justice, policy implementation, teacher development, and the nature of organizational systems that can  
lead to more effective knowledge mobilization at national, local authority and school levels. Dr Ellis teaches language and literacy on the B.Ed and PGDE courses and on the MEd at Strathclyde University. She is in demand as a consultant to local authorities and schools across Scotland and she has led several national knowledge exchange projects and is frequently interviewed on literacy matters by newspapers and TV.
Dr Ellis welcomes applications from research students with interests in: the interplay between policy, assessment and practice; literacy curriculum and pedagogical development; assessment of literacy; teacher development; the interplay between classroom/school/local authority environments for literacy policy implementation; national and local policy development and the evolution of literacy policy.
Boigraphical Summary
Dr Sue Ellis (BA (Hons) Class 1 - Linguistics and Language Pathology, University of Essex 1979; MSc - Human Communication, Guy’s Hospital, University of London 1981; PGDE – Primary /Middle School Education, University of Sussex, 1983; PhD – The Changing Shape of Useful Knowledge in Literacy Education - University of Strathclyde 2013). Worked as a Primary teacher in West Sussex and Waltham Forest before moving to Jordanhill Teacher Education College in 1989. Appointed Senior Lecturer, University of Strathclyde, 1995 and Reader in Education, 2004.
The Speaker for the Opening Dinner 3rd October 2013
Mr Norrie McKay, Education Adviser Professional Learning GTC Scotland.
Subject:- “Smile Though Your Heart is Breaking”
Norrie is currently an Education Adviser with GTC Scotland developing the scheme of Professional Update for all registered teachers and supporting the new Professional Standards, having been a member of the Standards writing team and piloted Professional Update in a previous post. He was previously a Professional Officer with North Lanarkshire Council with responsibility for Professional Review and Development, student teachers, probationer teachers, setting promoted salaries, management structures, working time agreements and other union negotiations.    
His project work included financial savings, recruitment processes, staffing structures, planning new school campuses, and staff conferences.  He also worked with council bands, orchestras and choirs.

Prior to working for North Lanarkshire Council and then the GTC he was Head Teacher at Coatbridge High School, Deputy Head Teacher at Braidfield High School, Clydebank, Assistant Head Teacher Vale of Leven Academy, Alexandria, Principal Teacher Maths and Assistant Principal Teacher Guidance at Clydebank High School and Teacher of Maths at Cathkin High School, Cambuslang.

He was Research Officer with the Scottish Council for Research in Education, and latterly one of the Directors.

Other national work has included:


Chair of the Higher Still Maths group, the advanced technologies in maths group, and a SCRE project group;

Leading the west of Scotland local authorities on the National Strategy Group on Student Placements in terms of national timelines, evaluation, funding the Practicum system, and student reports;

Review groups, working groups, panels, lectures and speeches at awards ceremonies at various universities.

Revision for the SNCT of the national job sizing toolkit and writing and delivering a national training programme.

He was educated at Rutherglen Academy, University of Glasgow (MA and MEd) and Jordanhill College (distinction).

Norrie’s interests include classical choral singing with the Strathclyde University Chamber Choir and the Edinburgh Festival Chorus.

The Speaker for 7th November 2013
Dr Stephen McKinney Senior Lecturer (Creativity, Culture and Faith)
University of Glasgow.
Subject:  Sectarianism and Schooling in Scotland?
Historical and Contemporary perspectives.
He has been a lecturer and researcher for over 20 years. His research interests include faith schooling, religious education and the impact of poverty on education. He has published over 60 research articles, reports and book chapters. He has published widely on these topics and he welcomes enquiries from Masters and Doctoral students seeking supervision in these topics. Stephen is the PGDE Secondary RE Specialist coordinator. He also teaches on the MA in Religious, Philosophical and Moral Studies and lectures for various stages of the BEd. He supervises dissertations at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Some recent publications:


McKinney, S.J., Hall, S., Lowden, K., McClung, M. and Cameron, L. (2013) Supporting school leavers in areas of deprivation into initial positive school leaver destinations. Improving Schools 16 (1), 67-83.

McKinney, S.J., Hill, R.J. and Hania, H. (2013) Individualism, consumerism and greed. A response from the Old Testament Prophets and Catholic Social Teaching. The Pastoral Review. Volume 9, Number 1. Jan/Feb 2013.

McKinney, S.J. and Sullivan, J. (eds.) (2013) Education in a Catholic Perspective. Ashgate: Farnham.
Dr Stephen McKinney is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Education, University of Glasgow. He is currently acting head of Creativity, Culture and Faith, one of the five Research and Teaching Groups of the School of Education. He has academic qualifications from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow and the Gregorian University in Rome. He has been employed in Education as a teacher of Religious Education in All Saints Secondary and John Paul Academy, both in Glasgow.
Other commitmnets include:

Secretary of the Association of University Teachers of Religion and Education

Member of the Executive of SERA.

Editorial Board member of the Journal of Moral Education and the Journal of Beliefs and Values

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