The Young Ambassadors for Inclusion are a national group of pupils who are campaigning for ALL pupils – whatever their age, background, or support need – to feel included in school.

They share their views and experiences of Scottish education and work to identify the ways they feel schools are inclusive and also where improvements could be made.

Why inclusion at school matters: Minister John Swinney with Inclusion Ambassadors

Nobody likes being left out at school. Whether it’s not having the chance to join in with activities in the classroom, playground or sports field, feeling excluded or unsupported is not fair on anyone. Every pupil is entitled to feel included in school.

What the Young Ambassadors for Inclusion discussed…

Top five ways to make sure pupils feel included safe, accepted, and treated equally:
  1. “Everybody being included in education, regardless of need”.
  2. “Making it easy for pupils to ask for help and offer the right support”.
  3. “Not being defined by any difficulties you have”.
  4. “Whole school awareness of additional support needs can support much better understanding and reduce stigma and isolation”.
  5. “When school staff have an understanding of different additional support needs and can understand certain behaviours, it helps them understand why young people may act in a particular way”

welcome to schoolThe Young Inclusion Ambassadors also talked about how to raise awareness, like holding pupil conferences, taking part in national awareness weeks, putting on school assemblies led by pupils, or developing awareness raising days about specific issues such as mental health or being LGBT.

Top 4 reasons why pupils with support needs should have the same chance as others to get involved in pupil participation and have a say in decisions:
  1. “If school don’t support you to try things how will we ever get the chance?”
  2. “Support staff have ideas of what young people are good at or not good at. Don’t make assumptions.”
  3. “We need to create positive stories about pupils with additional support needs rather than focus on the negatives.”
  4. “We want to be seen as individuals with our set of unique strengths and skills.