Scotland

Teaching union EIS suspends workload industrial action

school exam Image copyright Getty Images

The teaching union EIS has suspended a programme of industrial action over the workload faced by teachers in relation to examinations.

An agreement has been reached to remove compulsory unit assessments from all National 5 and Higher courses.

The EIS said the move will "lighten the assessment burden for pupils and teachers".

The industrial action had threatened to disrupt work for the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).

EIS general secretary Larry Flanagan said: "I can confirm that EIS Council has now agreed to suspend our programme of industrial action in relation to excessive SQA-related workload.

"The agreement that has now been reached at the CfE (Curriculum for Excellence) management board, based on a proposal submitted by the EIS, is a significant victory for teachers and pupils in our secondary schools.

"The changes that have been agreed, to permanently remove compulsory unit assessments from all National 5 and Higher courses, will ease the assessment burden on pupils and teachers and create time and space for deeper learning and teaching in our classrooms."

Image copyright PA

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: "This is welcome news from the EIS and I am delighted that they have confirmed suspending a programme of industrial action in relation to teacher workload.

"Over the past few months, I have listened carefully to what teachers, parents, young people and others have had to say on workload, and have responded positively with a range of actions to help reduce workload pressures. As part of this, I have now announced the removal of mandatory unit assessments from National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher courses.

"This will significantly reduce the workload for our teachers, giving them more time to focus on what is most important - teaching our young people - while maintaining the core principles of Curriculum for Excellence."

Mr Swinney added: ""I am glad that the EIS have recognised these efforts and I hope that together we can move forward to ensure that teachers in Scotland have more time to teach, and contribute to closing the attainment gap."

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