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Chief Inspector’s introduction

Estyn is playing an important role in the continual improvement of education and training in Wales. We are keen to ensure that our findings are as accessible, timely and as useful as possible for practitioners. To this end, we continue with the approach we introduced last year by publishing sector summaries in early October that outline the sector specific messages from the forthcoming 2022-2023 annual report. The full report will be published in January.

As providers in Wales continue to work to tackle the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognise the importance of clearly communicating the effective practice that we have seen alongside the challenges that providers face. For each sector, we note what’s working well and what needs to improve, and we provide an overview of the most common recommendations from inspections. In addition, we include a concise set of reflective questions aimed at helping providers to consider the best way of making progress against one of the areas for improvement. The sector summaries culminate with links to case studies and inspection reports that describe a selection of the effective practice that we have seen throughout the year.

As well as exploring our findings from each sector in more detail, in the new year I will also highlight some of the key themes that span the education and training sectors in Wales. These six themes, that we expand upon in our full January report are: mitigating the impacts of poverty and disadvantage; learner attendance and attitudes to learning; the Welsh language in education and training; PISA; implementation of the curriculum for Wales; and provision and support for refugees and asylum seekers. As always, the full report will give providers, policy makers and the wider public a rounded picture of our education and training provision in Wales. It will also support our providers and practitioners in their work to improve.

Video transcript:

It’s wonderful to be here at Caer Elen, and thanks to Dafydd and the team for the welcome.

I mentioned a few months ago that I’d received a call from Estyn, and when I said that Estyn had phoned, and what they said was, “Oh no, not again!”

So the sector summaries that we’ve released today are a timely way for providers to learn about the messages we’ve seen during the year as part of our inspections.

We’ve been seeking to bring our work closer to the sector’s needs.

It’s been great to welcome the Estyn team to the school, to Ysgol Caer Elen today, to discuss the way we’ve been developing strategies to promote the Welsh language across the school’s language continuum, and to discuss and share our ideas for the future.

Estyn has developed recent models for inspecting schools which, in my view, are certainly moving in the right direction.

In addition to what’s going well, we list areas in need of improvement, we produce a summary of our recommendations during the year, and also provide a series of reflective, contemplative questions, in order to help providers to improve their work.

We conclude with a number of examples of good practice that we’ve identified during the year.

Many thanks to the school’s staff and pupils.

It’s been a great opportunity today to visit the Senedd, to talk to them, to visit classes, and to see the work done throughout the school to promote the Welsh language.

Give us feedback.

We want to know whether it’s worthwhile, of any use to you.

And once again, if it’s not, what’s its purpose?

It’s been a fantastic day, so thanks again to Dafydd and the team.

It’s been good to see what’s going on.

The report is out.

It’s purpose is to be of use to you, so please have a look at it.

The full report will be out in January.

This is a short, pithy document, online on our website, that you can look at and work out what’s going well, and what we need to look at to improve education.