Teachers to get extra training ahead of new curriculum

Image caption,
The EIS teaching union has welcomed the extra training day

Teachers are to get an extra day of training to help them to prepare for major changes in the way lessons are taught.

The Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) will be implemented in secondary schools when pupils return to the classroom in August.

The Scottish government said teachers would have an additional in-service day between August and December.

Scottish Labour described it as "too little and far too late in the day".

Education Secretary Michael Russell said: "I have said all along that we will do whatever we can to support teachers during implementation.

"The extra in-service day I am giving to teachers will enable them to address specific issues in their own school."

Step forward

The EIS union said the "scarcity of dedicated time" for teachers to work on preparing for the changes had been a worry for some time and the announcement of additional training was a "significant step forward".

General Secretary Ronnie Smith said: "The EIS has had a number of meetings with the Cabinet Secretary in recent months to highlight teachers' concerns over aspects of CfE delivery, and it is encouraging that Mike Russell has taken those concerns on board and is working to address them."

He added: "CfE has much to offer our young people, and it is right that we should do everything we can to ensure that it can be a success."

The extra training will be given after the changes come into place at the start of the new school term and Labour said the government announcement was a "desperate gesture".

Scottish Labour's education spokesman Des McNulty said: "Another day, another panic measure from Mike Russell.

"Giving teachers one more day - after the new curriculum has already started - is literally too little and far too late in the day.

"SNP mismanagement means that Scotland's children are being treated like guinea pigs."

The new curriculum has already been implemented in primary schools and is due to be introduced across the board in August.

Secondary teachers have threatened to strike over CfE and called for its introduction to be delayed for a year because of a lack of training and new textbooks.

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