Wales politics

'Pioneer schools' to lead Welsh education shake-up

Children use computers
Image caption Computing skills are seen as being as important as reading, writing and arithmetic

Sixty-eight "pioneer schools" have been chosen to lead a shake-up of lessons in Wales.

Education minister Huw Lewis said the schools would lead the way in developing a new curriculum, to be taught from 2021.

He said pioneer schools would have a "crucial role" in ensuring an "exciting future for education" is realised.

Plans include fewer tests, ending the "key stages" system and more focus on computing and information technology.

Mr Lewis said the chosen schools, which were spread across Wales, would work with those already selected to improve digital skills.

He also announced the names of 60 schools to lead the way on a "new deal for the education workforce", to ensure teachers get enough support as the new curriculum is rolled out.

"I know it is an issue that is concerning many professionals, and I will be looking for our pioneers to develop innovative ideas that will reduce workload and avoid red tape for the profession as we move towards implementation of our new curriculum," he said.

Conservative Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns welcomed the announcements, but warned "Labour's flawed teacher training system must be urgently improved and ministers must ensure schools have enough financial resources in place".

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