SECONDARY school students have received certificates after completing a programme to experience a range of subjects they may not have considered as a future career.

The more than 60 pupils from the Stirling and Falkirk areas were taking part in the School-College Opportunities to Succeed (SCOTS) programme and last week received certificates to recognise their achievements.

The aim of the SCOTS programme is to build confidence, resilience and to allow pupils to experience a range of subjects they may not have considered as a future career.

The partnership between Forth Valley College, Stirling and Falkirk councils allows pupils to attend college one half day per week.

The programme also allows the pupils to be considered college students while attending and able to use the facilities and is aimed to support transition to college life.

The college's Stirling campus saw a celebratory event on Monday, May 29, with Tracey Patrick, team leader (secondary) from Stirling Council as the special invited guest.

It is understood many of the pupils have applied for future courses to continue their journey.

This year for the first time, the format of the programme has changed and rather than experiencing a taster block of eight different subjects throughout the full session – pupils were asked to choose three subjects from eight to take part in from August to December, and then to choose one of them from January to May to specialise in, and aim for a SVQF Level 4 in that subject.

In Stirling they chose from construction, science, childcare, hospitality, salon services, healthcare, travel and tourism as well as creative industries.

Kenny MacInnes, principal at Forth Valley College, said: “Since the SCOTS programme started ten years ago in Falkirk and nine years ago in Stirling, it has consistently helped over 95 per cent of the young people who took part, move onto a positive destination and we hope we will continue to encourage similar results.

“We want college to be a positive experience and the SCOTS programme is where it starts.

“The SCOTS programme is arguably more important now than it has ever been.

“Indeed, one of its great strengths is its flexibility and we will continue to look at the programme on a year-on-year basis, to assess the needs of the pupils, and help encourage them to see college as part of their future learning journey.”