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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-09731: Tavish Scott (Shetland Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 16 June 2017

To ask the Scottish Government in light of the comment in its report, Education Governance: Next Steps - Empowering Our Teachers, Parents and Communities to Deliver Excellence and Equity for our Children, that "our relative performance compared to other countries has deteriorated across all three areas", for what reason this deterioration has arisen.

Answered by: John Swinney 23 June 2017

As outlined in Education Governance: Next Steps, the Scottish Government is taking a range of actions to create a school and teacher-led system, where headteachers and teachers are empowered to be the leaders of learning in their schools and classrooms. There are many strengths in the Scottish education system, with excellent teachers, a strong learner-focussed curriculum and many children and young people achieving excellent exam results. The actions the Scottish Government is taking to reform education governance, which are consistent with the recommendations made by the OECD in its review of Scottish education, will ensure we continue to build on these strengths.

The Scottish Government acknowledges that there are challenges which must be overcome in order to improve Scotland’s education system. These include a lack of consistency in the degree of autonomy afforded to schools, unacceptable variation in the level and quality of support for schools and too much bureaucracy generating unnecessary workload for teachers.