EIS Welcomes Publication of 'All Learners in Scotland Matter: Our National Discussion'

Created on: 01 Jun 2023

The EIS has welcomed the publication of the report, ‘All Learners in Scotland Matter: Our National Discussion’

Following the recommendation in the Muir Review to build a consensual vision for the future of Scottish education, the report provides an overview of the evidence collated through the National Discussion and sets out the vision, values and action necessary to make it a reality.

Commenting, EIS General Secretary Andrea Bradley said, "The EIS welcomes the publication of this important report and commends the work of the independent facilitators, Professors Alma Harris and Carol Campbell in harnessing the views of stakeholders to shape the vision: All Learners in Scotland Matter."

Ms Bradley continued, "The vision and values outlined in the report resonate strongly with those articulated by the EIS - responding to the holistic needs of all learners, underpinned by principles of social justice, inclusion, equity, equality and diversity."

"In practical terms, we believe this means addressing the impact of poverty; ensuring that every child and young person has access to free school meals; that diversity is reflected in the education workforce and embedded in the curriculum; and that sufficient resources are devoted to removing the barriers to young people’s full engagement in education."

"The report sends a strong message to the Scottish Government about the imperative and urgency of 'dedicated and sustainable funding' to provide adequate staffing and specialist resources to deliver inclusive education and to honour the commitments made to children and young people with additional support needs. We are clear that, if the Scottish Government is truly committed to putting learners at the heart of the new vision, it must urgently provide sufficient additional resources to effect meaningful change."

Ms Bradley went on to add, "Like the Muir Review, the report highlights the importance of cultural change in driving reform and issues a call to bring the joy back to learning and teaching. We hope that this will herald a departure from the narrow focus we have seen on attainment and high-stakes exams, which has stifled creativity and enjoyment across all stages of learning and is impacting on the mental health of young people and sapping the joy out of teaching."

"The call to adopt a human-centred approach to educational improvement also signifies the need for change and provides an opportunity for teachers to be truly empowered to lead the way in education, with professional judgement and teacher voice informing decisions and actions – a principle, we were pleased to hear endorsed by the Cabinet Secretary in the Scottish Parliament yesterday."

"As we await the publication of the Hayward Review, we will take time to consider this report fully and look forward to engaging further in the reform process, for the benefit of the children, young people and teachers of Scotland."