‘Massive untapped potential’ in Welsh schools, says leading academic

The Welsh education system has ‘massive untapped potential’ and the Schools Challenge Cymru (SCC) initiative has a made a ‘significant impact’ within its first two years, according to a leading Welsh government adviser.

Writing for the Wales Journal of Education, Professor Mel Ainscow, the Welsh government’s SCC ‘champion’, praised the quick progress since the SCC initiative launched in 2014.

Ainscow formerly led the Greater Manchester challenge, which preceded the initiative in Wales, and said that neither the London nor Greater Manchester challenges had made the same amount of progress in the same short space of time.

He said: “The evidence we have after 18 months suggests that the programme has already led to significant progress in the performance of schools in some of the most challenging areas of the country.

“It is encouraging that these developments have begun to have a ripple effect across the education system in ways that are raising expectations and promoting the idea of a self-improving system.”

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