Delivering Prudent Healthcare in Wales »Prudent healthcare principles ensure patients receive the most appropriate treatments to achieve mutually-agreed goals.Learn more »
Postcards from the children of Wales to NATO world leaders
Primary school pupils from Wales are to be given the opportunity to write a personal message to the NATO world leaders about their hopes for the future.
- Minister visits North Wales Fire and Rescue Authority
- Superfast broadband rolling-out across Pembrokeshire
Featured Article »Landmark Social Services law receives Royal Assent
- Postcards from the children of Wales to NATO world leaders
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- Children and young people
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- Education and skills
- Environment and countryside
- Equality and diversity
- Health and social care
- Amending the Environmental Damage (Prevention and Remediation) Regulations 2009 to transpose Article 38 of the Offshore Safety Directive
- Extending access to intermediary services for descendants and relatives of adopted people
- Renting Homes – Illustrative Model Contract
- Statutory Guidance to the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales in relation to the salaries of Local Authority Chief Executives
- The Ireland Wales Cooperation Programme 2014-2020
- Active Travel Action Plan
Featured consultation »Draft Technical Advice Note 1: Joint Housing Land Availability Studies
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Section highlightThe Gender-based Violence, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Bill
The Bill aims to improve the Public Sector response in Wales to gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
Legislative programme 2013 - 2014 »
The First Minister detailed the 8 bills in the Welsh Government’s 5-year Legislative Programme that will be brought forward during the 3rd year of the Welsh Assembly.Learn more »
Section highlightProject pipeline update - June 2014
Our pipeline provides visibility of infrastructure investment activity across Wales.
1st Supplementary Budget 2014-15 »
The 1st Supplementary Budget proposes a number of changes to the Final Budget for 2014-15, which was published in December 2013.Learn more »
- Statistics & Research
Upcoming calendar »
See the schedule for all statistics and research releases.View upcoming calendar »
National Reading and Numeracy Tests
The Minister for Education and Skills announced in his speech in February that, as part of our National Literacy Plan, we would be introducing a national reading test. We would also develop similar plans for numeracy.
Driving up standards in literacy and numeracy is vital to ensure our young people develop the skills they need to succeed. Tests will help teachers and schools identify strengths and weakness for individuals and groups of learners. They will help ensure those who need extra support are identified and supported, and help us check that our policies have the necessary impact.
The National Reading and Numeracy Tests will be implemented on a statutory basis; the first groups of learners will sit tests in May 2013.
The tests will be ‘bespoke’; we are appointing specialists to develop and standardise tests, in both English and Welsh, that meet the needs of learners and teachers in Wales.
All learners in Years 2 to 9 will be required to sit both the reading and the numeracy test. Learners in Years 2 and 3 who are learning through the medium of Welsh will only be required to take the reading test in Welsh although schools will be able to opt to test Year 3 learners in English as well if they want to. From Year 4 Welsh language learners will sit both Welsh and English tests. There will not be a test for Welsh second language.
While it is still very early days in the development of tests there are some key principles to which we are working. Tests will:
- support good classroom practice, learning and teaching by including diagnostic elements
- be straightforward to administer manually
- be suitable for administering on a group basis
- last no longer than 60 minutes
- be comparatively easy to mark so that they are less costly in terms of teacher time and classroom disruption.
In the interim we know that the vast majority of schools already use a wide range of tests to assess needs and progress in both reading, wider aspects of literacy and numeracy and number skills. We are working with local authority colleagues to maximize the use of reading tests this academic year on a non-statutory basis. We want all schools to administer reading tests, across Years 2 to 9 where possible, so that we do not miss any opportunity to identify early strengths and weaknesses and address them. We are not specifying which tests should be used this academic year and will not be using the data for any national comparative purposes. We will however be discussing, through local authorities, how and what we can learn from testing this year.
There will be a full consultation on the proposed reading and numeracy tests next year. It will look at issues around administration, how results might feed into annual reports to parents/carers, how data might be collected and feed into other improvement policies including Core Data Sets and banding amongst other issues.
As we work on the detailed design of the tests and their implementation we will actively seek input from colleagues across the sector. We will work to engage widely with stakeholders including parents/carers and governors and provide regular updates via the Dysg newsletter.