Mr W. Gray (PT)

Dalkeith High School: Learning for Sustainability

Learning for Sustainability is a whole school approach that enables the school and its wider community to build the values, attitudes, knowledge, skills and confidence needed to develop practices and take decisions which are compatible with a sustainable and equitable world.

Dalkeith High School is responding to Scottish Government recommendations to ensure that:

  • learners have an entitlement to Learning for Sustainability
  • the school has a whole school approach to Learning for Sustainability that is robust, demonstrable, evaluated and supported by leadership at all levels
  • school buildings, grounds and policies support Learning for Sustainability

In 2015 the post of Principal Teacher (Sustainability) was established to support the  development of Learning for Sustainability within Dalkeith High School.

Over the period 2015-2017 the following learner opportunities have been established:

S2: Forest Schools

The Forest School programme uses outdoor activity to promote emotional, physical and cognitive wellbeing. Participants in the programme are encouraged to develop a range of practical and social skills with an emphasis on developing self awareness and resilience.  Activities include: outdoor cooking, shelter building, use of hand tools (saws, billhooks, knives, loppers), crafts, outdoor games, kite flying, greenwood working and forge work.

Learners for this therapeutic programme are identified by guidance staff.

The programme is delivered within local woodland and in the school’s Sustainability Hub.

Future development: widen the experience to enable more learners to experience the programme.

S3: Employability Skills – Horticulture

Learners experience a range of activities which develop practical gardening skills, communication and planning skills, social skills and an appreciation of health and safety. Activities are focused around the maintenance of the school amenity garden.

Learners choose the S3 Employability Skills as part of the school’s integrated curriculum provision.

Learners can progress to either the NPA or the SCQF 5 Horticulture course in the senior phase.

Senior Phase Horticulture

Senior phase Horticulture uses a vocational pedagogy to equip learners with the skills required to pursue a career/future study in the Horticulture industry as well as gaining a practical insight into issues of food security, community food production, equity and social justice.

Depending on the needs of learners the course is offered as either:

  • An SCQF 4 National Progression Award (GL2C44) composed of the following units: Plant Propagation (H1YK10), Allotment Gardening (H1X410), Organic Gardening: Edible Crops (H1X410)


  • An SCQF 5 Award composed of the following units: Use of Hand tools in Horticulture (H1K411), Plant Production from Seed (H1JH11), Home and Allotment Gardening (H1JS11), Plant Nutrition (H1JF11).

Course work is carried out at our Community Allotment (Vogrie Country Park), the School Garden, the Sustainability Hub and in class when necessary.

Senior Phase Therapeutic Horticulture     

Learners choose Therapeutic Horticulture as a Health and Wellbeing option.

The programme affords learners the opportunity to experience a range of therapeutic activities with a focus on mindfulness.

Future Development: development of SCQF 4/6 Horticultural Therapy unit (H1X710/12)

Keep Scotland Beautiful One Planet Picnic Project

S3 Horticulture and Home Economics pupils are participating in the project which aims to link local food production and healthy eating.

Click the link to download college prospectuses:

Below is an excellent site outlining the amazing range of careers on offer in the Horticultural sector.