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 A  Scottish government survey has prompted questions about the quality of teaching in the country’s primary schools.

Newsnight Scotland has highlighted hitherto unreported figures in the government’s own Survey of Achievement which show primary teachers consistently overestimate how well their pupils are doing.

In recent years, teachers thought their children would be three times better at science than subsequent tests revealed. In maths, P7 teachers were twice as optimistic as reality. And in reading, teachers thought their P7 pupils would do one and a half times better than the eventual test results. The Scottish Survey of Achievement also shows primary teachers have little confidence in their ability to teach science – even though it is a key part of the government’s new Curriculum for Excellence.

The findings could represent an opportunity for the government – because it has the potential to shift the debate away from class sizes to something that really determines the quality of a Scottish education: the quality of the teachers themselves.

The Scottish government is now setting up a major review of teacher education, which will start work next month. It will have access to a series of findings which cast further doubt on the quality of Scottish primary education – and the teachers who deliver it.

Source: BBC Education  http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8484180.stm

These findings lend support to concerns raised by PACE on the overestimation  of teachers estimates of pupils’ progress at Key Stage 3 on the elements of numeracy and literacy https://paceni.wordpress.com/2009/12/17/northern-ireland%e2%80%99s-key-stage-3-literacy-levels-crash/

Unfortunately for parents in Northern Ireland the BBC and print media did not cover the story. The DENI or CCEA also failed to offer a comment