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Merger of HMIe & LTS - Clarity needed on rationale and remit, says EIS

Responding to the news that HMIe and LTS are set to merge, the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) has questioned the rationale behind the merger and the remit for the new organisation – the Scottish Education, Quality and Improvement Agency – that is set to be created by the merger.

Commenting on the announcement today, EIS President Kay Barnett said, "This merger announcement, which will bring together two quite disparate organisations with very different roles and responsibilities, will raise many questions within the Scottish education community.  Teachers and parents will want to be assured that this merger is being undertaken for the right reasons and is not being driven purely by a financial, cost-cutting agenda.”

Ms Barnett continued, "Both of these organisations play important roles in Scottish education, in terms of supporting curricular development and providing quality assurance and protecting standards throughout our education system.  The EIS will be seeking early discussions with the Cabinet Secretary in order to seek clarification regarding the rationale behind this merger and the remit of the new Scottish Education, Quality and Improvement Agency.”

Ms Barnett added, "While increasing support for the implementation of CfE is a priority we would share, there are many questions still to be answered about the implications of this merger for schools, teachers and pupils.  In particular, bringing the role of the Inspectorate closer to Government will raise serious questions regarding the independence of school inspectors within this new structure.  Any return to a system where inspectors are seen as agents of government imposing change on schools would be unpalatable to the vast majority of teachers and parents. 
 
"It is also interesting to note that the Scottish Government has announced this change on the very same day that the Westminster Government’s own bonfire of the quangos has confirmed the retention of an independent inspection body for schools south of the border.”

 (ENDS)

Brian Cooper (EIS Press Office) – bcooper@eis.org.uk - 0131 225 6244


 
 
 
 
 
  
EIS President Kay Barnett