The first lesson that Mearns Academy’s Rosie Bircham tries to teach her students is that Scots is a language in itself, and not just a dialect of English.
When you see Gaelic on signs over here, you think that’s fantastic. But Scots is actually the primary spoken language after English in this region, and you just don’t see it very often. You see it in gift shops, on souvenirs and things. It’s very twee, and not really taken seriously. Because Scots has ties to the English language, there’s a feeling that it can just sort of fade out. There’s not the same fear of it being lost. It deserves a life outside of a novelty tea towel.