Jeremy Miles MS, Minister for Education and Welsh Language
Yesterday afternoon I made the Commencement Order which confirms the 100 maintained secondary schools and 4 pupil referral units who have declared that they wish to roll out the new curriculum in their schools for year 7 learners from September 2022. This was in response to the flexibility that I provided in July 2021, where secondary schools could choose to roll out for year 7 in 2022 and then year-on-year sequentially, or could choose to roll out for years 7 and 8 in 2023 and then year-on-year sequentially. From September 2023 all schools in Wales will be taking forward the new curriculum, and the first qualifications will be awarded in 2027.
I am delighted that nearly half of secondary schools have chosen to roll out this year, including 13 special schools, 9 Welsh medium, and 13 bilingual (all categories). 6 of these are all-age/middle schools. The secondary schools who have chosen to roll out from 2022 come from across Wales, rural and urban, large and small, and with a range of different profiles and experiences. I am also pleased to hear of the positive and constructive work that schools who are rolling out from September 2023 are doing in their clusters to develop, trial and evaluate their new curriculum. All schools continue to receive bespoke support from their school improvement services, and can share approaches, opportunities, and challenges through the National Network. This support will be ongoing as we move beyond September to continued development and improvement of school curricula.
This legislation is a key milestone and is part of the last phase of legislation to support the new curriculum. From September, our new curriculum will be a reality with 95% of schools and all funded non-maintained nursery settings in Wales teaching the Curriculum for Wales. This is a once-in-a-generation reform and I am delighted with practitioners’ continued enthusiasm, motivation and support for the new curriculum and the real and impressive innovation happening across Wales.