What is this?

Best practice to support practitioners and education authorities in evaluating and planning for improvement in Gaelic Education.

Who is this for?

The Advice on Gaelic Education will be of particular interest to senior leaders, practitioners in Gaelic Education and education authorities. HM Inspectors use the Advice to support scrutiny activities.

This Advice provides important information on the national context, and describes best practice to support senior leaders, practitioners and education authorities in evaluating and planning for improvement in Gaelic Education. It is based on evidence from inspections, reviews and validated self-evaluation, covering all sectors of Gaelic Education; and other engagements with a wide range of stakeholders.

See Gaelic version.

How to use this resource

The Advice on Gaelic Education should be used with the suite of quality frameworks How good is our ..? to contextualise these to the Gaelic sector. These frameworks set out the standards we use to evaluate and report on quality and improvement in Scottish education.

Challenge questions

Here are some challenge questions to support professional dialogue and help focus self-evaluation and improvement to Gaelic:

  • To what extent are senior leaders and staff critically engaging with the Advice on Gaelic Education and scrutiny findings to improve their outcomes for children and young people?
  • How do we ensure that improving provision for Gaelic is central to self-evaluation activity and part of impactful strategic planning for improvement?
  • What are our approaches to raising attainment and closing the poverty-related attainment gap across all areas of the curriculum?
  • How do we use our understanding of the social, economic and cultural context of the school to inform and shape planning for improvement?
  • In what ways do we gather and take account of a range of evidence on the quality of immersion we provide?
  • What actions are we taking to ensure learning and teaching is of a consistently high quality?
  • How effective is our use of digital technologies to enhance learning, deliver the curriculum and develop skills for learning, life and work?
  • What does equality and equity look like for the children and young people in Gaelic Medium Education?
  • The General Teaching Council for Scotland’s Professional Standards apply in English Medium Education and Gaelic Medium Education, with four bespoke references to Gaelic across standards. How will you embed their use in your setting?


March 2022: We made minor updates to the Advice on Gaelic Education by renewing time bound references; adding detail of legislation for Gaelic to section 2 and adding more detail on assessment to Section 7.11.

October 2022: We have updated the presentation slides and professional learning resources. These are presentations used by HM Inspectors Lead Officers  in sharing inspection evidence, and supporting professional learning and improvement.

PDF file: Advice on Gaelic Education (February 2015) - Updated March 2022 (960 KB)

You can also access the Advice on Gaelic Education publication in sections.

PDF file: 1. Introduction (277 KB)

PDF file: 2. Legislation (286 KB)

PDF file: 3. Policy (358 KB)

PDF file: 4. Gaelic Medium Education (385 KB)

PDF file: 5. Engagement with parents (456 KB)

PDF file: 6. Career-long professional learning (CLPL) (357 KB)

PDF file: 7. Total immersion (527 KB)

PDF file: 8. The immersion phase (immersion in the Broad General Education from end of P3/beginning of P4 onwards) (282 KB)

PDF file: 9. Secondary stages (401 KB)

PDF file: 10. Improving fluency with a planned programme for language, grammar and vocabulary (373 KB)

PDF file: 11. Transitions (174 KB)

PDF file: 12. A 1+2 Approach to Language Learning (278 KB)

PDF file: 13. Ethos for Gaelic (374 KB)

PDF file: 14. Learners with additional needs (282 KB)

PDF file: 15. Gaelic Learner Education (278 KB)

PDF file: 16. Gaelic Learner Education: Curriculum 3-18 and Language Learning in Scotland: A 1 + 2 Approach  (582 KB)

PDF file: 17. Learning about Gaelic language and culture (279 KB)

Presentations and professional learning resources

PDF file: Advice on Gaelic Education - key messages (2 MB)

PDF file: School Inspection Findings with Gaelic evaluations (1.4 MB)

PDF file: Sharing HM Inspectors’ findings - Building capacity by illustrating improvements (1.7 MB)