Science at key stage 3 and key stage 4

Summary

This report considers a range of factors, such as the quality of teaching and assessment, curriculum planning, staff development, and curricular and extra-curricular learning experiences, that contribute to improving standards in science. It considers general and vocational examination routes at key stage 4. It also reports on the progress made in key stage 3 against the recommendations made in Science in key stages 2 and 3 (Estyn, 2013).
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Recommendations

Schools should:

  • R1 Provide stimulating and challenging learning opportunities in science involving effective practical work to meet the needs of all pupils, including the more able
  • R2 Evaluate their curriculum for science in preparation for the new area of learning and experience for science and technology
  • R3 Ensure that departmental self-evaluation is robust and based on a range of evidence to evaluate subject-specific standards and the quality of teaching
  • R4 Use feedback from the latest PISA report to inform planning for improvement
  • R5 Ensure that assessment helps pupils to know what they need to do to improve

Local authorities and regional consortia should:

  • R6 Provide more subject-specific support for science teachers on improving teaching and assessment, and facilitate the sharing of good practice
  • R7 Provide more support for schools to evaluate their curriculum, and plan for the development of the science and technology area of learning and experience, as well as the changes to qualifications in science

The Welsh Government should:

  • R8 Campaign to attract more science graduates into the teaching profession in Wales