Scottish Liberal Democrat’s will use their education debate on Wednesday afternoon to ask Parliament to vote on separating Education Scotland’s inspection and policy function. An Inspectorate report published this week, says schools are not doing enough on literacy and numeracy. Yet Education Scotland is directly responsible for helping schools with reading and writing.
“Education policy and school guidance must be separate from inspecting schools. At the moment one body – Education Scotland – do both. This week’s report into school inspection criticises the guidance schools have been getting. That guidance comes from Education Scotland. So this government quango is criticising itself. That is ridiculous. Now is the time for change. I want John Swinney to accept the sensible case for reform and separate these two conflicting roles.”
In a recent Scottish Parliament vote, Scottish Government education policy was condemned as “failing teachers, parents and pupils”. Now, Scottish Liberal Democrats are proposing making positive changes on the basis of the evidence that the Parliament has received to both Education Scotland and the national exams body, Scottish Qualifications Agency.
Tavish Scott added:
“Scotland has slipped down the international education rankings. Parents, pupils and teachers have had a decade of SNP rule. So change is needed. Inspiring teachers and great school leadership are at the heart of rebuilding Scottish education to the world class service we all want. This cannot be achieved when Education Scotland is both poacher and gamekeeper.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats have initiated this debate to call on the Education Secretary to separate policy advice from school inspection and listen to the voices of teachers in getting the SQA to work effectively.”