Guiding vision for education unveiled

From: Scottish Government
Published: Thu Jun 01 2023

38,000 take part in National Discussion.

Findings from the biggest listening exercise ever undertaken on Scottish education have been published.

The National Discussion asked the public for their views and reached 38,000 people, including 26,000 pupils and students.

Key findings from the report All Learners in Scotland Matter: Our National Discussion include:

  • the views and needs of children and young people, parents, carers, families and communities should be listened to, heard, respected, represented, engaged, and valued
  • a regular curriculum review process should be established
  • the future education system should capitalise upon and harness the abilities, skills, and talents of all children and young people in Scotland

Education Secretary Jenny Gilruth yesterday said:

“The National Discussion has prompted around 38,000 people across Scotland to make their voices heard about the future of education. The engagement was wide-ranging and encompassed views that can too often be overlooked.

“The central message of the report, that all learners in Scotland matter, will now be the guiding vision that underpins our programme of education reform.

"I am grateful to everyone who took part, including the schools, community groups, local authorities and third sector organisations that hosted events. This vision is the starting point as we look to the future. The challenge for all of us in Scottish education now is to work together to make this vision a reality."

The independent report was commissioned by the Scottish Government and COSLA and facilitated by Professor Carol Campbell and Professor Alma Harris, who are both members of the International Council of Education Advisers.

Professor Campbell yesterday said:

“It has been a great privilege to facilitate the National Discussion. I am delighted that the vision for All Learners in Scotland Matter will be central to ensuring an ambitious, supportive, and inclusive Scottish education system."

Professor Harris yesterday said:

“I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the National Discussion. Every single contribution has been hugely valuable and has enabled us to develop the vision, values, and Call to Action that will shape the future landscape of education in Scotland."

Councillor Tony Buchanan, COSLA Children and Young People Spokesperson yesterday said:

“I am delighted so many got involved in the discussion and would like to thank Professor Harris, Professor Campbell and all the children, young people, parents/carers and school staff who took part. COSLA's Children and Young People Board are set to consider the findings of this discussion when they meet this week, and we are looking forward to working with our partners across the education system as we respond.”


All Learners in Scotland Matter: Our National Discussion on Education has been published in response to Professor Ken Muir's review: ‘Putting Learners at the Centre: Towards a Future Vision for Scottish Education.' This recommended holding a national discussion to establish a compelling and consensual vision for the future of Scottish education. The National Discussion was co-convened by the Scottish Government and COSLA.

At least 38,000 people were reached throughout the consultation, including:

  • 26,000 pupils and students who attended online assemblies
  • 5,671 responses received via survey responses, email and other formats.
  • Over 200 group responses
  • More than 80 people who attended online public events.
  • More than 6,000 posts on Twitter using the hashtag #TalkScottishEducation and more than 10 million social media users saw the consultation's hashtag.

National Discussion events took place across Scotland between September 21 and December 5 last year. These were led by schools, community groups, local authorities and third sector organisations.

Company: Scottish Government

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