§ Mr. Ancram
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what proposals he has to raise standards in Scottish secondary schools. 109W
§ Mr. Wilson
Implementation of the Government's initiative to raise standards in Scottish schools is being overseen by the Action Group on Standards in Scottish Schools. I chair the Group and membership is widely drawn from within and beyond education.
In September, with the endorsement of the Action Group, we issued for consultation a strategy paper for the development of a framework of school targets in key areas with national introduction in the school year 1998–99. The key areas are, in the first instance, literacy, numeracy and attainment. The outcome of the consultation was discussed by the Group on 15 December. The Group gave broad support to the principle of target setting; agreed that improvement could be achieved in every school; and agreed also that comparability among similar schools was important. The Action Group agreed to meet again in February to take matters forward.