Mr George Macbride
- Honorary Senior Research Fellow (Culture, Literacies, Inclusion & Pedagogy)
George MacBride’s career in education has developed, sometimes simultaneously, across the fields of practice, policy and research.
George taught for 37 years in Glasgow secondary schools, firstly as an English teacher and for 30 years from 1976 in support for learning and pastoral care. He worked across the curriculum with young people in economically disadvantaged areas. In addition to his teaching, he played an active role in contributing to professional development, in school, locally and nationally; this included contributing to developing classroom practice and to the development and teaching of nationally recognised courses developing support for learning for a more inclusive education system.
As a teacher trade unionist, George was active in the EIS for some 25 years; for the last 15 years of his teaching career he was annually elected convener of the Education Committee. Union activity also included active participation in EIS working groups, developing policy in fields such as equality, teacher qualifications, school certification and inclusive education. George contributed to commissioning research for the EIS, to promoting cooperation with SCRE and to developing the union’s professional development courses through partnerships with higher education. Dialogue with policy makers also featured regularly.
George contributed to European teacher union seminars on such topics as equal opportunities, quality assurance, promoting positive relationships, teacher qualifications, teacher professionalism and education policy formation. He was for some years a member of the OECD Trade Union Advisory Council (Education).
George’s role in the EIS Education Committee led to his appointment to the Council/Board of the Scottish Examinations Board, the Scottish Consultative Council on the Curriculum, and Learning and Teaching Scotland. He further contributed to policy formation through membership of sub-groups: the Examinations Committee of SEB; working groups of the SCCC on pedagogy, national qualifications, curriculum structure, support for learning, and the modern languages curriculum; membership of the Inclusive Education Reference Group and convenership of the Processes of Change Group of LTS.
George was also appointed to various government Working Groups concerned with aspects of assessment, curriculum issues, major reform of national qualifications, and teacher professionalism.
He was a member of the Curriculum Review Group which developed the framework of Curriculum for Excellence; he further contributed to the development of CfE as a member of the Programme Board and of the Validation Group which approved the final curriculum specifications.
After retiring from teaching, George carried out research informed commissions for: EIS (early years education, skills development, equality in education), Glasgow City Council (evaluation of school initiative), Scottish Government Learning Directorate (recognising wider achievement), Education Scotland (identifying significant aspects of learning to support assessment). He carried out policy related commissions for the Learning Directorate (Building the Curriculum 5 writing group, focus groups and national conferences to inform assessment policy) and for Education Scotland (quality assurance for the National Assessment Resource). Many of these commissions were designed to support professional learning.
Immediately after retirement he worked for the University of Glasgow on research projects in curriculum and assessment: Engineering the Future (EPSRC); FLaT programme evaluation (Highland Council and SQA); Fibonacci Programme (EU); Assessment at Transition (Scottish Government).
Some of this work overlapped with George’s appointment as Honorary Senior Research Fellow in the School of Education. He has since contributed to the work of the School through such activities as: contributing to developing the online MSc Assessment in Education; participating in the CAMAU Research project on progression as the basis of the school curriculum, including representing CAMAU on the Welsh Government’s Coherence and Assessment Advisory Groups; membership of UGEAN; contributing to organising seminars and conferences (e.g. AEA-Europe 2015 hosted by the University, IEAN founding seminar 2018).
George is a Fellow of the EIS and a Fellow of the SQA.
The themes which have emerged through George’s career underpin his recent and on-going research interests: social justice, inclusive education, assessment, sustainable change in education and teacher professionalism.