International showcase for Scottish education

Education Secretary leads delegation to New Zealand in partnership with Trade Unions
Scotland will lead a UK delegation to the International Summit on the Teaching Profession, organised by the OECD and Education International, being held in Wellington, New Zealand on March 28 and 29.

Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning Michael Russell and Larry Flanagan of The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) will make a joint address to the annual summit which brings together education ministers, national teacher trade union leaders from 13 states including the USA, Germany, Japan, Denmark and Sweden.

Ken Muir, Chief Executive of the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) will also be part of the delegation which will represent the UK and highlight Scotland’s key educational strengths while identifying best practices worldwide that will strengthen the teaching profession and raise student achievement.

Mr Russell said:

“The key priorities of the Summit align with our own priorities for Scottish education: breaking the link between poverty and attainment, investing in teacher excellence and a curriculum focussed on pupils’ experiences to help them achieve success.

“Scotland’s teachers are amongst the best in the world. This is an opportunity to promote the excellence of our workforce and its critical role in helping our children and young people to achieve success while learning from other delegations including other top performing states.

Mr Flanagan commented:

“The International Summit on the Teaching Profession is an important event which will bring together teacher trade unions and education policy makers from across the globe. The summit provides an important opportunity for countries to work together to address the many challenges facing education around the world and to share their knowledge and expertise.

“It is significant that each delegation will be comprised of both teacher representatives and government Ministers; in Scotland we have a strong political consensus around Education and the summit will allow us to highlight the importance of constructive dialogue and partnership working in ensuring high-quality education provision. The EIS, together with kindred teacher representatives, will play a full and active role as part of the Scottish delegation alongside Scottish Government, led by the Cabinet Secretary.”

Mr Muir added:

“I am honoured to be part of this education delegation. GTCS already has strong links with the New Zealand Teachers Council and we have shared regulatory best practice over the years. I look forward to providing the conference with information about the on-going work of GTCS including the scheme of Professional Update which launches in August and our revised Professional Standards which have already generated much interest from overseas.

“We know Scottish education and the close cooperation amongst all parties involved is highly regarded abroad, but there is much we can learn from other countries and it will be interesting and useful to engage in this two-way communication of ideas.”

The Summit is jointly organised by the New Zealand Ministry of Education, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and Education International.