College confirmed as national leader in virtual school delivery

An early festive celebration arrived for North Highland College UHI and its partners in West Highland College UHI, Inverness College UHI and Highland Council - winning a national Digital Learning Award for Highland Virtual School at the College Development Network (CDN) Awards last week.

The award is the third plaudit the Virtual School initiative has received this year. In May it won the ‘Outstanding Use of Technology in Delivering Remote Teaching and Learning’ category at the Tes FE Awards. More recently the initiative was shortlisted as a finalist for Best Use of Technology in Education at the Herald Digital Transformation Awards. 

Virtual School is an innovative and sustainable partnership initiative delivering high-quality technology-enhanced learning and teaching across UK's largest council area.  Three colleges, the council and 29 High Schools serve these rural Highland communities where many schools are small with less than 200 pupils.  Several years ago, Senior Phase pupils had a limited choice of curriculum compared to pupils elsewhere in Scotland and some pupils endured lengthy travel to attend college courses, often hampered with poor winter weather. Thanks to Virtual School 20 qualifications are now offered to pupils based anywhere in the Highlands enabling pupils to study subjects for their chosen career. 

The college was also delighted that Quality and Learner Engagement Coordinator, Lindsay Henderson was shortlisted in the College Colleague of the year category. Lindsay was commended for the outstanding support she provided to staff and students throughout the difficult circumstances over the last year.