Early childhood and schools

Improving Schools in Scotland: An OECD Perspective


This policy review was commissioned by the Scottish Government. The agreed purpose was to inform the ongoing development of education policy, practice and leadership in Scotland, by providing an independent review of the direction of the Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) and emerging impacts seen in quality and equity in Scottish schooling. It focuses especially on the cycles corresponding to Broad General Education (BGE, i.e. up to student age 15) with the brief being to:

  • Highlight key impacts of the approach taken to developing the curriculum to date.
  • Analyse key aspects of education policy and practice in Scotland, and integrate insights from PISA and other evidence from different countries/regions.
  • Highlight areas where further change or development could add value to an ongoing programme of educational improvement.


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Table of contents


  • Executive summary
  • Overview
  • Chapter One Scotland’s “Curriculum for Excellence”: Context and structure
  • Chapter Two Quality and equity in Scottish schools
  • Chapter Three Decision-making and governance for the “Curriculum for Excellence”
  • Chapter Four Schooling, teachers and leadership
  • Chapter Five Assessment, evaluation and the “curriculum for excellence”
  • Annex A - The Review team
  • Annex B - Review visit programme
  • Tables
  • Figures
  • Boxes



Background report prepared by Scottish Government 







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