You are currently viewing Plans to secure teaching jobs and end standardized testing proposed by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Plans to secure teaching jobs and end standardized testing proposed by Scottish Liberal Democrats

A job guarantee for teachers and an end to standardized national tests are among a series of proposals to improve Scotland’s education system.

As part of the school-focused recommendations, there are also calls for a review of teacher pay and conditions, as well as a reduction in class sizes.

The suggestions were put forward by the Scottish Liberal Democrats, with the party’s education spokesman Willie Rennie pledging to “empower” teachers.

Under the teacher job guarantee, the party said, every qualified teacher would be employed on a permanent basis.

Three-year packages for trainee teachers for specific subject areas is also an idea that has been suggested, with the aim of solving the problem of hard-to-fill teaching positions.

The party also called for urgent reform of student assessment to introduce a system “free from political manipulation” and which provides adequate support for all learners to reach their potential.

Among the party’s other proposals would be a change in education guidance to help focus funds on closing the poverty-related achievement gap.

The Scottish government has said it will “always pay close attention” to how school education can be built.

Rennie claimed the SNP chased ‘headlines and fake gimmicks’ during their time in power at Holyrood.

“Education across Scotland has taken a big hit, but it’s not just thanks to the global pandemic,” he said.

“The SNP has had 15 years to make a serious impact on educational attainment in the most deprived areas, but has made no concerted attempt, based on what actually works, to do so. They chase headlines and misleading gimmicks.

“The SNP’s promises to reduce class sizes and improve provision for pupils with additional support needs were never worth the paper they were written on.

“Instead, class sizes are skyrocketing and teachers are suggesting that classroom behavior is deteriorating.”

Rennie said that according to his party’s plans, there would be more classroom support for teachers.

He said, “Teachers can no longer cling to the rocks of the government’s chaotic education policy. They need help now.

“That’s why the Scottish Liberal Democrats are putting forward a package of proposals to put all qualified teachers to work and reduce class sizes.

“My party and I will empower teachers by providing them with more support in the classroom, ensuring they have the time they need to carry out lesson planning and student assessment.”

A Scottish Government spokesperson has said the 2022/2023 budget will see “record investment” in education.

“We will always pay close attention to how we can take advantage of Scotland’s excellent school education,” they said.

“School spending per pupil was over £800 higher in Scotland last year (21/22) than any other country in the UK and our continued investment in education means the number of teachers is at its highest since 2008, class sizes are shrinking and remain the lowest in the UK.

“We will provide funding to support the recruitment of 3,500 teachers and teachers during the current spending review period until 2026/27.

“The 2022-23 budget will see record investment in education and resources and capital expenditure will increase by almost £200million – one of the biggest increases in the history of the Scottish Parliament.”

The spokesperson also highlighted the number of recruitments of teachers and student support assistants.

“Our £145.5 million investment will also secure the sustainable employment of additional teachers and classroom assistants, the biggest increase to support teacher recruitment since 2007,” they continued.

“We provide councils with an additional £15million each year to help them meet the individual needs of children and young people.

“In 2021, 1,036 additional student support assistants were recruited. This builds on the increase of 1,354 over the previous year and again exceeds our Program commitment to the government to provide 1,000 new support assistants.

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