Newton Rooms Learning Centres Underway In Highland
24th January 2019
Newton Rooms are designed to encourage more young people into careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
A network of the centres in Norway work with schools and local employers to provide inspirational STEM education in the most rural parts of the country.
A similar network of Newton Rooms is being created in the Highland region by the Science Skills Academy, a partnership project led by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), with £3m from the Inverness and Highland City-Region Deal.
Other organisations behind the initiative include Skills Development Scotland, the University of the Highlands and Islands, The Highland Council and NHS Highland.
A new STEM centre is planned for Lochaber in the next two or three years. In the meantime, an interim Newton Room is being created at Caol Youth Centre, which is now being fitted out with a teaching room, auditorium and a laboratory.
Organisations behind the project are developing Newton modules to match STEM sectors in the Highlands and Islands. These will complement the school curriculum and allow families and communities to use the Newton Rooms to enhance and grow STEM activities within the Lochaber area.
Scotland's first two Newton Rooms, in Thurso and Fort William, will officially open in the spring.
Andrew Johnston, HIE’s director for the Science Skills Academy, said:"It’s great to see work start on Lochaber’s Newton Room. The centre will aim to inspire young people across the whole of Lochaber who are interested in STEM subjects.
“We are working with partners in the field to provide a coherent STEM learning experience throughout a young person’s education. This in turn will provide opportunities for young people to pursue careers in some of the emerging and future technological developments.
“We very much look forward to opening the centre."
Local Cllr Allan Henderson, Chair of Highland Council’s Environment, Development and Infrastructure Committee said:“The Lochaber Newton Room is a prime example of how the City-Region Deal is benefitting the wider Highlands at a local level. Young people studying STEM subjects in Lochaber will find their learning experiences and opportunities improved greatly when the Newton Room opens.”
Infrastructure Secretary Michael Matheson said:“It’s fantastic to see the progress being made in creating a network of Newton Rooms across the Highlands by the Science Skills Academy - a project supported by the Scottish Government through a £3m investment as part of the Inverness and Highland City Region Deal.
“We want Scotland’s young people to be inspired on an ongoing basis to develop their STEM capabilities throughout their educational experience and learn how this can be translated into future skills and career opportunities. I am pleased that work has started on Lochaber’s Newton Room and that it will benefit not only young people but also their families and communities across the region to develop an interest in STEM subjects.”
Highland Council's Environmental Health team have identified raised levels of naturally occurring algal toxins following routine monitoring in coastal waters at Loch Glencoul, Kylesku area. Eating shellfish such as cockles, mussels, oysters or razor fish from these areas may pose a health risk arising from the consumption of these algal toxins.
Start-up businesses in the Outer Hebrides could receive a welcome injection of capital from a new joint initiative by Business Gateway Outer Hebrides and Highlands and Islands enterprise. The Outer Hebrides Young Entrepreneur Start-Up Scheme (OHYESS), will provide grants of up to £2,500 to support entrepreneurs age 18-40 to set up businesses in key sectors across the Outer Hebrides.
Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has welcomed an international technology-led services and payments specialist as the newest tenant to Thurso Business Park. The agency has developed the park to enable local firms to expand and to attract new companies into the area.
Highland Council's Environmental Health team has identified raised levels of naturally occurring algal toxins following routine monitoring in coastal waters at Loch Eishort. Eating shellfish such as mussels, cockles, oysters or razor fish from these areas may pose a health risk arising from the consumption of these algal toxins.
Residents of Britain's most remote inhabited island have stepped up efforts to move towards a cleaner energy system. The people of Foula off Shetland have signed up to the Clean Energy Transition Pledge, which commits them to producing a decarbonisation plan over the next 12 months.
The authors of far-reaching 2018 report on potential investment priorities at Cairngorm Mountain have reviewed and updated their findings. US-based consultants SE Group were commissioned last year by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), owner of Cairngorm estate.
Funding for food and activities during the summer break. More children and young people will benefit from a nutritious meal and a place to play this summer holiday.
At a meeting of The Highland Council on Thursday 27 June 2019, Councillors decided to discontinue the provision of education at Altnaharra Primary School, dividing its catchment area between Tongue Primary, Farr Primary and Lairg Primary schools. A copy of the consultation report, together with the original proposal paper and all relevant appendices can be viewed on the Council's website at: www.highland.gov.uk/schoolconsultations The Council is satisfied that implementation of closure is the most appropriate response to the reasons for formulating the original proposal identified by the authority.
"Highland Council as agreed to allow a question time for members of the public at future Council meetings. The motion was presented by Depute Leader Cllr Alasdair Christie and means that from December 2019, Highland Council meetings will include a time allocation for questions from members of the public.
Highland Councillors have unanimously agreed that the Council will support the continuation of the exemption from UK Air Passenger Duty for flights departing from airports in the Highlands & Islands; and Members also agreed that the Council will continue working with HiTRANS to present the case of the need for, and benefit arising from an exemption from the current UK Air Passenger Duty and any successor duty. The Council's stance comes this week as calls have been made by Aberdeen Airport for greater parity with Highlands & Islands.
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