The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a worldwide study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in member and non-member nations of 15-year-old school pupils’ scholastic performance on mathematics, science, and reading.
- In maths, Wales scored 478, below England and Northern Ireland which both scored 493 and Scotland which scored 491
- In reading, Wales once again came last in the UK with 478, England scored 500, Northern Ireland 497 and Scotland 493.
- In science, Wales scored 485, England scored 512, Northern Ireland 500 and Scotland 497.
(Source BBC News)
Commenting on today’s PISA results, Liz Maher, President of the South Wales Chamber of Commerce said:
“These results are disappointing but emphasise what our members have been telling us.
“Our Welsh Business Barometer has consistently been showing that around two-thirds of businesses in Wales have difficulties recruiting staff and our members regularly complain that they can’t find young people with the skills that the business needs.
“The consequences of poor educational outcomes now, compared to the rest of the world, will be felt for decades. Today’s 15 year olds will still be in the workforce in 50 years’ time. That’s half a century of Wales’ most important asset – the abilities of our people – lagging behind other countries. The work on improving educational attainment in Wales must be redoubled so that we see improvements in three years’ time.
“Everyone involved must take their heads out of the sand, stop being complacent and stop blaming others. While schools and the government have a fundamental role in improving education standards, we in business must play our part. Businesses can help by visiting schools to talk about what they do, by allowing pupils to come in on work placements or getting involved in schemes such as Young Enterprise or Business in the Community’s Business Class.
“Through being involved with Young Enterprise myself I’ve found these schemes to be a brilliant opportunity for young people to gain valuable life skills lessons not just business skills. School pupils need to see people from their local community who have aspired to a high level of success in employment or business o see that they too can achieve. That is true of any student but particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds.”