Active Schools and community sport, in partnership with The Galloway Glens Landscape Partnership and Castle Douglas Scottish Country dancing club have come together to fund a Jigs and Reels Teaching resource for every primary and Secondary school in the Stewartry this festive season.
This resource not only supplies staff with the tools they need to teach the national form of dance each year, it also supports the face to face instruction offered by wonderful volunteers in local clubs who wish to give their free time to support staff and pupils within Stewartry schools. The three way partnership aims to deliver a mass event where schools are invited to showcase their learning and this will be planned when is safe to do so.
David Foreman, Secretary of the Castle Douglas Branch of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society said,
“The Branch has been delighted to work with the Active Schools team to support the roll-out of the Jigs and Reels programme in the Stewartry schools. We have seen for ourselves the fun and enjoyment that the schools and their pupils have discovered in the dances and we look forward to working further with Active Schools wherever we can as the programme travels to new communities. And don’t think country dancing is just for young folk. If Mums and Dads want to join in there are opportunities for them too. They just need to contact us through the RSCDS website and we can put them in touch with their local group.”
A total of £675 was funded by both groups, and at present schools are receiving their resources and tuition from the Active Schools team and the response from schools has been incredible. These books have gone to all schools including secondary PE departments, who continue to teach Scottish Country Dancing as part of the curriculum.
Jeff Leaver, Chair of the Education Committee said
“This is a wonderful example of what partnership working across schools and communities can achieve. The offer of funded resources to our schools shows the enthusiasm and commitment from community groups have for Scottish Country Dancing. It also highlights the understanding of the impact this will have on our learner and staff in the long term from our community clubs and partners and this is great to see.”
Ros Surtees, Vice chair of the Education Committee said
“The enthusiasm and resilience from our local clubs at this time is a testament to those individuals, clubs and partnership who continue to work tirelessly to create opportunities and spread the message about a shared passion in our schools. To see Scottish country dancing be promoted by this partnership and such a valuable resource funded and offered to school staff is truly fantastic.”
McNabb Laurie, Galloway Glens Team Leader added:
I can still remember my country dancing teacher having to stop mid-sentence and hurry back to the hifi to stop the cassette at the perfect moment. It is brilliant to think the next generation of children will enjoy a similar experience, albeit with a couple of technological advances. This is a perfect example of the Galloway Glens Scheme at work, seeking to ‘connect people to our heritage’. Many thanks to all partners, particularly our funder National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Council’s Environment Team.