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Meeting of the Parliament

Thursday 24 April 2008

Note: (DT) signifies a decision taken at Decision Time.

The meeting opened at 29.15 pm.

1. Ministerial Statement: The Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning (Fiona Hyslop) made a statement and answered questions on National Qualifications.

2. International Education: The Minister for Schools and Skills (Maureen Watt) moved S3M-1768—That the Parliament recognises the importance of preparing young people for life in today’s increasingly globalised society; agrees that all our young people should have an international education with opportunities to develop a knowledge and understanding of the world and Scotland’s place in it; congratulates the many schools across Scotland that have made and continue to make links with schools across the world, and agrees that the Curriculum for Excellence is the ideal vehicle to deliver international education in schools and equip young people with an understanding of, and the skills for, the modern world.

Ken Macintosh moved amendment S3M-1768.2 to motion S3M-1768—

after “across the world” insert—

“; believes that Holocaust education, including visits to the Auschwitz concentration camp, is an important part of lessons on citizenship and international education; agrees that the Scottish Government should ensure that the Barnett consequentials of the £4.65 million in funding announced by the UK Government for visits to Auschwitz are used specifically to support Scottish pupils for this same purpose”.

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 57, Against 64, Abstentions 0).

Hugh O’Donnell moved amendment S3M-1768.1 to motion S3M-1768—

insert at end—

“and calls for the Scottish Government to bring forward a comprehensive national languages strategy including a rolling programme to introduce a second language early into primary education and to secure economic benefit from the diverse language skills in a multicultural Scotland”.

After debate, the amendment was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 58, Against 16, Abstentions 47).

The motion, as amended, was then agreed to ((DT) by division: For 104, Against 16, Abstentions 1).

Accordingly, the Parliament resolved—That the Parliament recognises the importance of preparing young people for life in today’s increasingly globalised society; agrees that all our young people should have an international education with opportunities to develop a knowledge and understanding of the world and Scotland’s place in it; congratulates the many schools across Scotland that have made and continue to make links with schools across the world, and agrees that the Curriculum for Excellence is the ideal vehicle to deliver international education in schools and equip young people with an understanding of, and the skills for, the modern world, and calls for the Scottish Government to bring forward a comprehensive national languages strategy including a rolling programme to introduce a second language early into primary education and to secure economic benefit from the diverse language skills in a multicultural Scotland.

3. General Question Time: Questions were answered by Cabinet Secretaries and Ministers.

4. First Minister’s Question Time: Questions were answered by the First Minister (Alex Salmond).

5. Themed Question Time: Questions on Europe, External Affairs and Culture and on Education and Lifelong Learning were answered by Cabinet Secretaries and Ministers.

6. Planning Application Processes (Menie Estate): Duncan McNeil, on behalf of the Local Government and Communities Committee, moved S3M-1712—That the Parliament notes the conclusions and recommendations contained in the Local Government and Communities Committee’s 5th Report, 2008 (Session 3): Planning Application Processes (Menie Estate) (SP Paper 73).

After debate, the motion was agreed to (DT).

7. Ministerial Statement: The Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Sustainable Growth (John Swinney) made a statement and answered questions on industrial action at Grangemouth.

8. Decision Time: The Parliament took decisions on items 2 and 6 as noted above.

9. Leven to Thornton Rail Link: The Parliament debated S3M-1539 in the name of Tricia Marwick—That the Parliament notes that the South-East Scotland Transport Partnership commissioned a feasibility study into the reopening of the Leven to Thornton rail link; believes that the reopening of this line to passengers and freight is vital to the regeneration of the Levenmouth area; notes that the reopening of the Leven to Thornton rail link is one of Fife Council’s top transport priorities, and believes that those most interested in the regeneration of Levenmouth should contribute to the feasibility study now being carried out.

The meeting closed at 6.07 pm.

P E Grice
Clerk of the Parliament
24 April 2008

Appendix
(Note: this Appendix does not form part of the Minutes)

Committee Reports

The following report was published on 24 April 2008

Health and Sport Committee, 3rd Report, 2008 (Session 3): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 85)