6 December 2016
David Evans, NUT Cymru Secretary, said:
“PISA is not necessarily measuring current policies but rather the outcomes of historic approaches to education. That will include systematic underfunding of our schools, seemingly endless policy changes and as successive education Ministers have noted, a failure to ensure high quality continued professional development for the teaching profession. It is also reflection of outside factors such as private tuition, poverty and social equality.
“We must ensure that we learn one of the major lessons from the highest performing nations in PISA, and ensure the education system of our small nation has clarity of vision and consistency of approach. Too often in Wales, frequently in reaction to PISA, we have seen knee jerk reactions which have actually hindered educational progress. Indeed the OECD itself has criticised the Welsh Government in the past for establishing and creating ‘reform fatigue’ in Wales. With the proposals around the new curriculum, new qualifications and potential changes to the way we train teachers and utilise the supply sector, there are already big reforms on the horizon which will have positive impacts.
Significantly these are changes that the profession itself has welcomed and is prepared to embrace. We now need to create a settled system and get the implementation of these initiatives right. If we do that there is no reason why progress cannot be made across all indicators, including PISA.”