Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the publication of the 2022 results of the OECD’s Programme for International Assessment (PISA).
“PISA is useful in looking at how some elements of education systems compare internationally and what lessons may be learned. However, it shouldn’t be read as a judgement on the quality of education systems in their entirety.
“PISA is a certain type of test which examines the application of skills and knowledge in maths, reading and science to meet real-life challenges. This is important. But teaching and learning in all the UK nations is broader and richer than the focus of these tests, both in these particular subjects and in the wider provision and curricula, such as arts, humanities, and sport. This is a proud tradition of our education systems.
“PISA should not be used for cheap political point-scoring, to justify a narrowing of the curriculum or to denigrate the work of schools in any UK jurisdiction, particularly in the context of severe funding pressures, teacher shortages, the uneven impact of the recent pandemic and the subsequent cost-of-living crisis.”