The Welsh Government is set to ensure that learning progression and wellbeing is a focus of education, as its new school framework puts an end to National Categorisation.
Reviews of the former framework have proved that pupil assessment and school accountability have become blurred too often. This new framework will allow parents to see more up-to-date and detailed information, as well as allowing for the publishing of a summary of each school’s improvement priorities and development plan.
Jeremy Miles, Minister for Education and Welsh Language, said:
“By putting learner progression at the heart of our reforms, we will be supporting every learning to reach their full potential.
Assessment and accountability are both crucial to raising standards, but they each have a very different role to play, assessment is about understanding an individual pupil’s needs and accountability is about how the school’s overall performance is evaluated. But the difference between the town has become blurred, which can have a detrimental effect on teaching and learning.
By bringing national categorisation to an end, we are doing two things. First, replacing it with a framework which sets out clear expectations so that every pupil is supported properly.
Second, providing better, and more up to date information on each school’s improvement plans, so that the focus is on learner progression rather than on headline descriptions. I’m confident that this framework will encourage more collaboration between schools, which will deliver high standards and aspirations for all our learners and support their well-being.”
The framework also separates the assessment of schools, which is in the best interest of the pupils and enables teachers to alter their teaching strategies, from accountability. Accountability is led by Estyn and drives improvement through transparency and enables judgement on performance. From September, Estyn will inspect schools under the new framework, with a view to increase the number of inspections that they undertake from 2024.