Our Educational Initiatives

In order to introduce more autonomy, innovation and diversity into the Scottish education system, the first two initiatives being promoted by SET are:

Low-cost Independent Schools

Educational ProjectsFollowing years of observing and opening low-cost independent schools in Third World countries, Professor James Tooley, Newcastle University, is to open one in Durham in early 2018. The fee will be £2,700 per annum, £52 per week, and the school is already heavily subscribed. The no frills school will offer a traditional education focusing on ‘an academically demanding curriculum, hard work and good behaviour’. Find out more…


The Schools’ Educational Trust has now joined with Professor Tooley to roll out a network of low-cost independent schools in Scotland, with the first ones likely to be located in Edinburgh, Glasgow or the Scottish Borders.

The Establishment of an Independent Network of Primary and Secondary Headteachers

The publication of the Consultation on the Provisions of the Education (Scotland) Bill, central to which is the inclusion of a ‘Headteachers’ Charter’, makes clear that a range of specific and important decisions will, in future, be required to be made at school level. In this context, the need for an independent forum dedicated to primary and secondary headteachers is clear. The Independent Network for primary and secondary Headteachers will therefore be established whose aims will be as follows:

  1. to encourage and support autonomy, innovation and creativity at school leadership level;
  2. to provide opportunities in a professionally safe environment for headteachers of Scottish primary and secondary schools to engage in professional reflection, discourse and collaboration, independent of existing government agencies, local authorities, employers and professional associations; and
  3. to provide an independent mechanism for primary and secondary headteachers to make a specific contribution to the formulation, development, evaluation and review of national policy.

These networks will seek to augment, rather than replicate or replace, the role of the existing professional associations, none of which offers a dedicated headteacher perspective. The forums will not be a trade union, rather they will be ‘headteacher think-tanks’ dedicated to examining the challenges of achieving greater autonomy for primary and secondary heads and supporting those who judge themselves and their schools to be ready to take on those challenges. Network meetings will be held under Chatham House Rules at times determined by the membership. The networks will be backed initially by the Schools’ Educational Trust (SET) given that they support the charities objectives of improving the quality of school education through greater autonomy, innovation and diversity.

If you are the headteacher of a Primary or Secondary School in Scotland and would like to receive more information about these networks please fill in one of our short registration forms:


Stimulating greater public debate

Educational Projects - Stimulating greater public debateSET will also help expand public debate regarding the changes required to achieve improvements across the education system.

This will include the provision of detailed advice and support to individuals and groups, as well as a strategic overview to all schools seeking to introduce greater diversity and innovation, as a means of achieving improved standards and much greater equity in outcomes.