Curriculum for Excellence and citizenship

We are keen to develop our children and young people into good, thoughtful and responsible members of the community.

We achieve this through delivering the Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) in our schools. This is the framework within which all state nurseries and schools in Scotland work.

About the Curriculum for Excellence

CfE sets out values, purposes and principles for the course of study for all children and young people aged from three to 18. It covers:

  • sciences
  • languages
  • mathematics
  • expressive arts
  • social studies
  • technologies
  • health and wellbeing
  • religious and moral education

CfE aims to improve the learning attainment and achievement of Scottish children and young people and ensure they achieve on a broad front, not just in terms of examination results.

It is important that children and young people gain the full range of skills and abilities they need to grow, live and work in the contemporary world. CfE aims to ensure they enjoy greater choice and opportunity to help realise their individual talents.

Education for citizenship

A key CfE theme is that children and young people become responsible citizens who respect others and participate in political, economic, social and cultural life.

Through CfE, they should also:

  • develop knowledge and understanding of the world and Scotland's place in it
  • understand different beliefs and cultures
  • make informed choices and decisions
  • evaluate environmental, scientific and technological issues
  • develop informed, ethical views of complex issues

How are these aims achieved?

Children should develop the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding by following the 3-18 curriculum. They:

  • are asked to reflect on what makes a good citizen
  • learn about democracy
  • learn how communities work and how good citizens enhance the quality of community life

Schools also ask pupils to demonstrate good citizenship through practical acts including:

  • environmental work (e.g. helping their school become an Eco-School)
  • taking part in community projects
  • fundraising and other charitable activities
  • mock school elections

How to find out more

Please contact your child's school for information on how it promotes responsible citizenship or email

For more information about CfE in East Lothian, please read this page.