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Still no evidence that Welsh Government’s education policies can raise standards - Aled Roberts

January 28, 2014 12:08 PM

Commenting on the Annual Report by the schools inspectorate in Wales, Estyn, which was published today, Aled Roberts, Welsh Liberal Democrat Shadow Minister for Education in the National Assembly, said:

"Yet again, Estyn's annual report is sombre reading.

"Last year's report highlighted a number of failures in the system, but it also included examples of best practice so that all schools could work towards improvement.

"It appears that lessons are not being learned: standards in primary schools are very similar to last year, with very few being marked as "excellent" and around a half requiring follow-up visits.

"The proportion of secondary schools graded as "unsatisfactory" has almost doubled, with over two-thirds of secondary schools inspected last year requiring follow-up visits.

"Literacy and numeracy standards are still judged to be not good enough, and the wellbeing of youngsters in pupil referral units was graded as either "adequate" or "unsatisfactory" in over half of those inspected.

"The report highlights what a difference good teachers and sound leadership can make to a school, but also points out that there are not enough opportunities for heads or senior leaders to receive the training they need to improve their leadership skills and this is something I will be taking up with the Minister.

"I welcome Estyn's view that tracking pupil progress is essential to achieving improvements and I look forward to debating the report in the Siambr in due course.

"However, I believe that this latest report highlights significant problems with the Welsh Government's approach to education and I have tabled an Urgent Question to the Education Minister for answer in the Siambr today".