24/04/2007

Chief Inspector Highlights Key Role Of Collaboration In Education

Chief Inspector of the Education and Training Inspectorate, Marion Matchett, has called for effective collaboration at all levels of the education system.

The call came as she launched the Chief Inspector’s Report 2004-2006, which covers inspections from pre-school settings up to Further and Higher Education Institutions.

Outlining her findings to representatives of the education, youth and training sectors at the Culloden Hotel, Miss Matchett highlighted that most learners are continuing to outperform their counterparts in England and Wales, as shown in GCSE and A-Level results.

The Chief Inspector cautioned, however, that these good results hid less positive trends and said: “Too many young people still leave school after 12 years with inadequate literacy and numeracy skills and will often find difficulty in getting work or succeeding in training.

“Often these children have pressures which may have been unknown to a previous generation, such as the emerging concern of mental health problems in young people and the increasing numbers of students for whom English is not their first language.” Miss Matchett highlighted that there were many changes currently taking place within the education, training and youth sectors to improve their performance and called for more joined-up thinking and collaboration to ensure learners would reap the benefits.

She continued: “Many of these developments require much better connections to be established and maintained across sectoral and professional boundaries, and within and among Government Departments if their aims are to be fulfilled.

“Increased collaboration between schools, colleges and training providers, for example, can improve the employment prospects for young people by better equipping them with the skills they will need to succeed in the world of work.”

Miss Matchett praised the excellent collaborative work being done by many stakeholders, including the teachers, trainers and youth workers whose work is dedicated to the advancement of the young person. She also stated that the continued development of government policy, strategy and delivery to support joined–up initiatives would maximise the effectiveness of this work for the learner.

In conclusion, she reminded those present of what their main focus should always be and said: “All of us who are concerned with the quality of education, training and youth work need to join forces more effectively to meet the challenges of the future.

“We must all strive to ensure that all learners, however faltering, experience the success of which they are capable.”

(CD/SP)

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