Our school

Most of our young people are at the early level of Curriculum for Excellence. We know that their complex social and emotional needs can impact their learning and achievement. We’re focused on developing their self esteem and confidence, and the imaginative, flexible programme we create for each student is tailored to support this. We foster a safe, positive environment to meet their individual needs, an environment which helps all our young people achieve their full potential. We place health and wellbeing and literacy at the heart of our academic approach.

We have both residential and day students. We no longer accept new day referrals. Our current day students are an integral part of our school. In addition to their classroom attendance, each day student is attached to one of our residential houses and spends time there every day - for lunch, break and rest. This ensures they feel fully connected to the community and have a strong sense of belonging.

Although we’re firmly embedded in Curriculum for Excellence, our commitment to personal, collaborative education is also inspired by the ethos of the Camphill movement, the principles of social pedagogy and the Waldorf Curriculum.

Ochil Tower School provides:

  • a positive learning environment
  • support for positive relationships
  • interdisciplinary learning
  • National Qualifications
  • ASDAN Qualifications
  • therapeutic support
  • an emphasis on personal development and pupil achievement through individualised programmes
  • outdoor learning including outdoor pursuits

Our Aims

We aim to:

  • support children to fulfil their own potential
  • support children to find their place in society
  • support children in developing strong identities based on self-respect, secure values and beliefs
  • promote social, mental, emotional, physical and spiritual wellbeing
  • enable children to participate in and contribute to social, cultural, political and economic life wherever possible
  • support children in developing the capacity and resilience to meet uncertainty and change
  • support children to become successful in life
  • awaken children’s curiosity in learning about themselves, their social, cultural and natural environment and to instil an interest in life-long learning.


  • placing the child at the centre and adopting a holistic approach to care and education
  • providing children with strong, reliable and trusting relationships as a basis for self-confidence, empowerment and resilience demonstrated through positive role modeling
  • instilling confidence and a positive sense of self by focusing on individual strengths and positive experiences
  • realising the 24-hour curriculum through creative and inter-disciplinary learning which take the sharing of everyday life as the starting point
  • using the extensive resources available in the school grounds as well as the great Scottish outdoors
  • being empathetic - understanding the children’s lives and challenges by looking through their eyes in their everyday context and accepting children as experts in their own lives
  • supporting children in exercising their rights through advocating for them where necessary
  • creating a high quality therapeutic life-space
  • embracing multi-disciplinary practice including medical, psychological, sociological, theological and philosophical perspectives
  • using close observation and critically reflective practice to understand each individual’s potential and to evaluate how support and nurturing can realise their full potential
  • building a future by taking account of the past and the present
  • working in collaboration with their families and other professionals to achieve the best outcomes.

Click here to find out more about our aims, our curriculum and our rationale.