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NAHT Cymru responds to IFS report on back of PISA school test results

Responding to a new report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) calling for a rethink of Welsh education policy on the back of last year's PISA test results, Laura Doel, national secretary at NAHT Cymru, said:

“Schools in Wales are working hard to deliver for their pupils, but this dedication hasn’t been matched by the investment needed, especially on the back of the pandemic and cost of living crisis.

“While we support the renewed focus from the Welsh Government on numeracy and literacy, schools do not have the time or funding to deliver this in the way they would like to.

"School leaders are facing impossible challenges in making budgets add up, with some having to make teachers and teaching assistants redundant when they actually want to recruit more staff to help those pupils with the greatest needs.

“The thing that would make the biggest positive difference for pupils right now would be a pause on unnecessary reforms like changes to the school day, and a concerted effort to increase support for schools so they can ensure all children get the education they deserve.

“While international comparisons can be useful, different nations will be at different stages of education policy development, and while we can learn from them we should not over-interpret them. The pupils who took these PISA tests in 2022 have not benefited from the new Curriculum for Wales.”

First published 21 March 2024