Edinburgh Council

Rising rolls and capacity at JGHS

1 February 2023: Following discussion at the JGHS Parent Council meeting in October 2022, it was agreed that the Parent Council would seek to engage with the City of Edinburgh Council about future accommodation requirements at the School.

The Parent Council has now sent a letter to Edinburgh City Council outlining the our concerns and asking for meaningful dialogue with the Council to address the issues raised.

A copy of the letter is available at the link below:

James Gillespie’s High School Capacity Planning

If you have any comments to make about the issues raised, please send them to the Parent Council.

Parent and Carers Consultation

Updated 31 January 2023: You are invited to an online meeting from 6.30-7.30 pm on Wednesday 1 February 2023 to:

  • discuss solutions and support for parents
  • discuss how these can be communicated with all parents and carers

Attend the meeting

Please contact the City of Edinburgh Council Parental Engagement email account to book a space to attend the meeting, or send your views marked with for the attention of Marie Lyon.

Email the Parental Engagement team

City speed limit consultation

23 January 2023: The City of Edinburgh Council is looking for views on proposals to expand the city’s network of 20mph streets, as well as lowering speed limits on roads that have limits of 40mph or more, which are mainly rural.  

20mph speed limit proposals map

Rural road proposals map

Whatever your views about our speed limit proposals, we want to hear from you.  

Take part and complete the online survey which is available on the Council’s Consultation and Engagement Hub.

Click here to complete the survey

Please forward this email to any contacts that you feel would be interested in making their views heard on the proposals. The consultation is open and you can feedback until 8 February 2023.

Report on CCwP meeting

22 January 2023: The City of Edinburgh Council’s Consultative Committee with Parents (CCwP) met on Thursday 19 January. The JGHS Paren Council was represented by our Chair, Sarah Scott.

The committee covered a number of topics, including

  • Director’s Update
  • Update from Connect Representative
  • Vaping Issues
  • Edinburgh Learns
  • Update from National Parent Forum Representative

Links to the full recording of the webcast and the presentations made at the recent meeting are available below:

CCwP meeting 19 January 2023

Edinburgh Learns for Life

CCwP vaping

For more information about the CCwP please visit the Council’s website:

City of Edinburgh Council Parent Groups

Parent engagement updates

10 December 2022: A few updates from Connect, the NE/SE Parental Engagement Locality Group and the new Guide to Children’s Rights are given below.


The December 2022 issue of the Connect newsletter is now available

Read the Connect newsletter

NE/SE Parental Engagement Locality Group

The Edinburgh Council NE/SE Parental Engagement Locality Group met on 23 November 2022.

The meeting minute and presentation given by Stephen Kelly, Senior Education Manager on the National Discussion consultation process, are now available:

NE/SE Localities meeting minute 23 November 2022

Education Reform, Stephen Kelly

Guide to Children’s Rights

The new Guide to Children’s Rights for parents and carers has just been launched.

Children’s rights | Parent Club

The booklet was created by the United Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) Parents Network, made up of parenting organisations and Scottish Government policy officials. They have been meeting for over a year to look at how best to inform parents, carers and family members about the rights of their children. The new guide conveys broad universal messaging about children’s rights and has adopted a warm and reassuring tone. 

The resource provides information about children’s rights and introduces the UNCRC, which sets out the rights that all children and young people should expect and what they need to grow up happy, healthy and safe. It outlines the central role played by parents and families and also recognises that they need protection and assistance to support the rights and wellbeing of their children. 

If you would like any more information please contact Shelly Coyne.

5G Mast Planning Application

15 November 2022: Parents may be interested to know that there is a current planning application for a 5G phone mast, which would be located in Whitehouse Loan, opposite the end of Bruntsfield Crescent and beside the entrance to the school.

The proposed mast would be 20m high and accompanied by a set of cabinets at the pavement level.

Details of the application can be found on the City of Edinburgh portal at:

5G mast planning application information

If you would like to make a comment on the application, the closing date is Friday 18 November 2022.

Free half-term activities for families in Edinburgh

14 October 2022: The City of Edinburgh Council 1 in 5 project, which seeks to raise awareness of child poverty across the city, has just published its 2nd newsletter.

In this edition there is information about free family activities happening through out October, including storytelling, bug hunting, and the Big Draw.

Read all the details in the newsletter:

1 in 5 newsletter, October 2022

About the newsletter

The 1 in 5 Newsletter supports the work of the Equity Board and Equity Network groups, and aims to:

  • Bring together information on services that education and lifelong learning services can link with to support families experiencing poverty.
  • Provide updates and reminders about welfare benefits and grants available to families, resources and staff CPD
  • Share case studies and top tips across schools and services of good practise in poverty prevention.

Mr Neil McCallum to be Acting Head Teacher at JGHS

10 June 2022: Today parents and carers at JGHS received a letter from Jackie Reid, Acting Senior Education Manager at the City of Edinburgh Council, to say that Mr Neil McCallum, currently Head Teacher at Balerno High School, has been appointed as Acting Head Teacher at JGHS from August to December, 2022.

The letter went on to say that “Mr McCallum has previously worked in James Gillespie’s, which provides him with a well-established knowledge of the school context. His extensive leadership skills and experience will augment the strength of the existing senior leadership team to provide the continuity and stability needed at this time”.

Update on recruitment of new Headteacher at JGHS

27 May 2022: The post of Headteacher at JGHS was advertised by the Council at the beginning of May, with the hope that a replacement for the school’s retiring Head, Donald Macdonald, could be put in post as close as possible to his departure date in August. 

That advert has now closed, and the Council have decided that the post should be re-advertised to allow more time for all prospective candidates to register an interest.  This will take place after the summer holidays at the beginning of the 2022/23 school session.

For the period up to Christmas, the Council are planning to designate an Acting Headteacher, and are hoping to recruit a suitable candidate from amongst the secondary Headteachers in Edinburgh.

Parent Council involvement

Parent representatives have been working with the Council to find the best way forward in this process. The Parent Council has emphasised the importance of a capable, committed and enthusiastic acting Headteacher being in place as soon as possible so they are able to work with Mr Macdonald in the run-up to his retirement and can take over smoothly after the summer. 

They have also stressed that the new recruitment process should be a dynamic and open one, which is advertised as widely as possible and will maximise the possibility of a competitive range of candidates being attracted to the role.

Please send any comments you have about this matter to the Parent Council.

Email the Parent Council