The Minister said:
“I am delighted to publish the revised guidance today for our new, completely reformed, made in Wales, school curriculum.
“This is a huge landmark for Welsh education - I am proud that we are leading the way on education reform and focusing on the knowledge and skills our young people need to become rounded citizens of Wales and the world.
The new guidance has been revised following extensive feedback from the draft curriculum published in April 2019 - it is simpler, shorter and gives every school in Wales the opportunity to design their own curriculum within a national approach that ensures consistency.
The Minister continued:
“I would like to thank practitioners for their commitment over the last three years in drafting this guidance.
“I would also like to thank the individuals and organisations who engaged during the feedback phase last year after the guidance was released in draft.
“The high quality and detail of these contributions has helped us make significant improvements.
“Improving education is our national mission and nothing is as essential as universal access to the experiences, knowledge and skills and that our young people need for employment, lifelong learning and active citizenship.”
The Minister also confirmed an additional £15m would be made available next year to support the curriculum’s implementation, with £12m going directly to schools for professional learning.
“Empowering our profession and building confidence will be key to implementing and delivering the new curriculum,” the Minister said.
As part of the National Approach to Professional Learning there will be an additional INSET day for the next three years, a total of 18 over three years, with resources developed for schools to use.
The Minister also confirmed plans to publish the curriculum’s implementation plan after Easter.
The plan will provide a clear outline for implementation based on where schools should be focusing their efforts at different points up to 2022 and how they will be supported in doing this.
The Minister said:
“Schools should not rush into trying to plan for this, now is the time for every practitioner across Wales to look at what has been published.
“Schools should take space and time to understand the model of the curriculum, engage with the materials and literature and start to discuss how their vision and values will eventually help shape their curriculum.
“The next step in our reform journey is prepare the profession to make it real in every classroom and for every learner in Wales.”
The head teacher of St Julian’s Primary School in Newport, Gwent, Luke Mansfield added:
“This is a really exciting milestone for education in Wales. It has been wonderful to see this new Curriculum for Wales evolve and develop over the past few years, with all stakeholders having the opportunity to contribute to and shape it.
“I am delighted with the increased freedom and autonomy that the new curriculum offers teachers, rather than having an overly prescriptive curriculum which restricts innovation and creativity.
“The process of creating this new curriculum is equally as important as the product; it has allowed teachers from across the nation to network and collaborate, sharing ideas and practice with each other in a way that has not been done before.
“This is a good opportunity for schools to take time to really reflect on what they teach and how they teach it, drawing on the knowledge and expertise of their teachers, and considering the interests and needs of their children.”