Our Aims & Visions

Our School Motto is 


– meaning –

Welcoming, Engaging, Safe, Honest, Inclusive, Nurturing, Equal

Our Vision

At Dunnottar School, we endeavour to be a Centre of Excellence, where children can achieve their full potential in their academic, creative, personal, physical, moral and spiritual development.  We recognise the benefits to the pupils, of parents and staff working together for the all-round development of each child.

The Curriculum for Excellence core values encompass the development of four key attributes;

  1. Successful Learners
  2. Confident Individuals 
  3. Responsible Citizens
  4. Effective Communicators

The four contexts in which we will base our curricular developments on are as follows:


1. The Ethos and Life of the school as a community

We encourage pupils to take responsibility within the school.  This allows them to have a say in aspects of what happens in school and allows them to see that they can make a difference.  Some of the ways that we do this are:

  • Buddy Schemes – P3 pupils are paired with younger pupils at playtimes and lunchtimes
  • JRSO (Junior Road Safety Officer) – delivers important messages on road safety
  • Playground Committee – teaching younger children to play co-operatively
  • ECO group/Allotment Committee – help the school become more environmentally friendly
  • Pupil Council – making decisions about improvements to the school
  • Charity Group – making decisions about charity events
  • House Captains, Vice Captains and Prefects – lead whole school events and support SMT to welcome school visitors and organise community events.

An ethos of open, positive, supportive relationships promote a climate where pupils feel safe and secure.  Good behaviour and positive attitudes are fostered through praise and recognition.  Pupils are encouraged to value themselves and others and develop effective citizenship skills.  These skills are fostered through co-operative learning activities.

2. Curriculum Areas and Subjects

At Dunnottar School all our learners will experience a Broad General Education which will include all of the experiences and outcomes from across eight curricular areas, progressing through the levels.  Pupils are supported in order to achieve their full potential in their academic, creative, personal, physical and moral development.


3. Inter-disciplinary Learning (IDL)

IDL is a key feature of Curriculum for Excellence, which enhances the curriculum and is reflected in our contextualised planning.  We believe that this approach towards delivering the curriculum brings about rich rewards, allowing for increased and improved collaboration across subject areas and leads to exciting and challenging opportunities for our pupils to make connections across learning within the context of Broad General Education.

4. Opportunities for personal achievement

Our ‘Wider Achievements Wall’ demonstrates to the Whole School Community the high value we put on our pupils’ personal achievements.  Our Charity Group leads initiatives that involve the whole school and develops the concept of giving.  Our Eco Group and Pupil Council support school improvements and help the school become more environmentally friendly.  The wide and varied programme of extra curricular activities and clubs offer tremendous opportunities for all pupils.

Dunnottar School also host an annual “Celebration Awards Night” where personal achievements are recognised.  The “4 A” Awards for “Always Academic”, “Always Artistic”, “Always Active” and “Always Kind” are decided through a nomination and voting process.  Many other awards linked to each area of the curriculum are presented at this community event.


Design Principles

Curriculum for Excellence identifies seven principles for curriculum design that are considered and used to evaluate the effectiveness of our planned learner experiences, programmes and resources.


Learning and Teaching

The success of our curriculum is through the delivery of high-quality learning and teaching.  This is at the heart of our work and the use of a variety of teaching methodologies is an essential feature of our curriculum.  A wide range of teaching strategies are implemented by all staff, where approaches to learning and assessment are varied and pupil-centred.  Assessment is for Learning (AifL) techniques, self and peer assessment, individual work, practical work, collaborative learning, and the use of ICT, outdoor learning, global citizenship, educational visits and visiting speakers are examples of approaches designed to actively engage our pupils in their learning.

Continued Professional Development (CPD) processes support staff in the field of learning and teaching.  Colleagues share practice, within both the school and the Cluster, which has led to further reflection of practice, incorporating new ways of engaging and supporting our learners.  Our collegiate approach to school improvement planning promotes high standards of consistency.  Formal and informal observation, survey results, attainment analysis and feedback are considered to promote improvement.  Resources are revised and enhanced as funding allows.


At Dunnottar School we ensure that when moving on from Nursery to P1 through to P7, and when moving through Curriculum for Excellence levels, class teachers share information.  Termly “Pastoral and Attainment” and “Planning” meetings ensure that class teachers share this information with Senior Management Team.  This will include information about learning and achievements, examples of their work, records of their progress and other relevant information.

United Nations Convention on Rights of the Child

Our whole school charter was revised by pupils during an assembly on Wednesday 18th April 2018. P1 – P7 pupils were involved in revising our whole school charter. We created a temporary display for parents and carers to engage with at our parent consultations in May 2018. Our House Captains spoke to parents and carers about this. We have now created a display combining both pupil and parental comments. This is outside Miss Duncans office.

We have a class charter in each classroom for Nursery to Primary 7 which has been created by pupils and staff which sets out the rights, selected from the UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child), which children and adults consider to be the most relevant in their class. The actions agreed between children and adults ensure that rights can be realised and enjoyed by everyone who has agreed to the charter.

Last year we did a lot of work to promote the Global Goals linked to United Conventions on Rights of the Child (UNCRC). We will continue to work on Global Goals and UNCRC this school year. Children in Primary 7S/G and P7M have been working on Global Goals presentations this year. Miss Murray, Mrs Shannan and Mrs Gibson have been very impressed with the presentations.