Unst is the most northerly island in Britain, enjoying a beautiful landscape, abundant
wildlife and still has a real community spirit where everybody works together and
families are able to thrive in a vibrant rural location. With shops, schools, a leisure
centre, low crime and the great outdoors, Unst has a way of life not seen elsewhere
in the UK.
In the past few months this way of life has been coming under threat, mainly in the
form of the Shetland Islands Council (S.I.C.) - Education Department - proposals
which are titled the ‘Blueprint For Education’.
Currently, Unst has 2 primary schools (Uyeasound and Baltasound) and 1 Secondary
School (Baltasound Junior High School). These schools are well equipped, staffed
by enthusiastic and dynamic people and offer a fantastic level of education from
Nursery (age 3) to Secondary 4 (age 16). Once students reach 16 years of age, they
can transfer to Lerwick to undertake their Higher SQA accreditation.
The Blueprint For Education has made a formal proposal to close Uyeasound Primary
This decision was made even though Uyeasound Primary has been inspected by HMIe (May
2010) which classed it as ‘outstanding, sector leading’ in 4 out of the 5 main areas.
This means that the school is one of the best in Scotland and is a fine example of
a fully inclusive and dynamic primary school - fully embracing the new Curriculum
Read what the HMIe think about the school here and decide for yourself if the school
should be closed.
How You Can Help
You can help in many ways, including:
1. Contact the Education Department
Express your own views to the Education Department who can be contacted at:
Express your own views to the elected members of the Shetland Islands Council. Follow
this link which will take you to the council members website. This contains all the
contact details and information for the 22 members.
Express your own views to the elected members at Holyrood and Westminster.
4. Assist in forming arguments against rural school closures
The Scottish Government are keen to safeguard rural schools and prevent local authorities
from closing schools for purely financial reasons. You could help us form our argument
by any of the following: