YPI Scotland

“In June 2023,  It’s our Future: Report of the Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment, was published to high interest from those invested in education. This report builds upon the recommendations made in a number of recent education reports which evidence a need for change to ensure learners are being equipped with learning experiences fit for a modern and changing world.

“We applaud the focus on personalisation within the report, recognising that rote learning which prepares young people to pass exams is not how we give them the tools to thrive in their education and to prepare them for the world of work. The report presents a balanced solution which encompasses subject knowledge, skills development, and real-world exposure through project learning, as well as recognising community and personal development through the personal pathway.

“It is vital that each of these principles are woven throughout a knowledge-engaged curriculum and not simply presented as an addition. Much of what is being proposed aligns with our work as a Foundation, particularly our Excelerate investment which seeks to root learning within real-world context. It is now for Government to decide which recommendations ought to be adopted and for the new national agencies, once these are formed, to deliver upon these ambitious plans.

“There remain areas to further consider and develop, particularly in the BGE phase. Young people must be prepared to experience education in a different way. They must know how to develop and articulate skills. They must have confidence to work independently and in the real world. They must understand what their personal experiences add to their education. They must feel part of a connected community. By not prioritising these areas in S1 to S3, learners will struggle to explore them fully from S4 onwards.

“Radically transforming education is about more than introducing projects. Through Excelerate we have made huge investments in culture and collaboration, as well as pedagogy. This work has required a range of significant structural changes in schools to facilitate increased collaboration time, space, and learning.

“We are four years into our system change journey with our pioneer Excelerate schools and we have seen first-hand the huge commitment it takes to effect true change which empowers practitioners and pupils. It is our hope that any national, and very welcome, transformation be considered, resourced, and scaffolded in a systemic and sustainable way.”