More progress in work to drive up literacy and numeracy

Work to improve literacy and numeracy skills in Welsh schools and colleges has moved another step forward today, Education and Skills Minister, Huw Lewis has confirmed.

Following consultation over the summer, the Welsh Government has published new Areas of Learning and programmes of study, covering the Foundation Phase right through to Key Stage 4, as part of its work to better embed literacy and numeracy into the curriculum.

The revised Areas of Learning for Language, Literacy and Communication Skills; and Mathematical Development, and programmes of study for Key Stage 2 to 4 for English, Welsh (first language); and Mathematics will become statutory from September 2015 – the same time that schools begin teaching of new GCSEs in English, Welsh, Mathematics, and Mathematics – Numeracy.

The independent review of curriculum and assessment arrangements in Wales, led by Professor Graham Donaldson, will shape a new curriculum for Wales and ensure that young people are learning the right skills for the modern economy. This review will inform the long-term picture of what Wales’ learners are taught in schools and colleges, and will report at the turn of the year.

However in order to keep its programme of school improvement on track and deliver for today’s learners, the Welsh Government is pushing ahead with its work to enhance the learning and teaching of literacy and numeracy within the curriculum.

The revised Areas of Learning and programmes of study are being published now so that schools and teachers can start to prepare for the next school year.

An online information booklet is also being published to ensure that teachers and schools have all the information they need to teach the revised curriculum subjects.

Speaking about the changes, the Minister said:

“Earlier this year, we invited views on our proposals for revised Areas of Learning for Language, Literacy and Communication Skills and Mathematical Development, as well as programmes of study for English, first language Welsh, and Mathematics.

“Responses to that consultation were very supportive and I am pleased to be publishing the revised curriculum for these Areas of Learning and programmes of study today.

“To accompany this, we are also developing a new package of support for teachers so that they can easily identify the changes we have made and the rationale behind them.

“All the changes link with Qualified for Life, our new education plan for 3 to 19 year olds that will deliver improvements in the education sector.

“My overriding objective is to ensure that all learners in Wales benefit from excellent teaching and learning and I am confident that updating these Areas of Learning and programmes of study will help us to make progress along this path.”