Response 990035028

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Questions

1. Do you agree with the definition provided of STEM for the purposes of this Strategy?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No

2. Do you think the aims of this Strategy and the four priority themes are the right ones to address the challenges identified?

Please select one item
Yes
Ticked No
Do you think the aims of this Strategy and the four priority themes are the right ones to address the challenges identified?
A more coherent approach in primary schools is needed. Primary provision across authorities is patchy and dependent on skill set. Every school needs multiple teachers proficient in STEM subjects to a high level and numerate

4. Do you think the scope of the Strategy is right? Tell us if you think it should exclude something or include anything else. For example, should it include training and development that employers provide for their workforce?

Do you think the scope of the Strategy is right? Tell us if you think it should exclude something or include anything else. For example, should it include training and development that employers provide for their workforce?
It should be a coherent system of hierarchical learning across all authorities and Schools. Due to an abysmal lack of coherent guidance on implementation of the new curriculum provided by Local Authorities, SQA and Education Scotland for around eight years, implementation is ad-hoc and highly variant within council areas let alone across Scotland. Coupled with late provision of course guidelines and constant revision by the SQA and Education Scotland across this span of time has lead to multiple redundancies in the system, for example there are now four ways to assess an end of unit UAS at National 5/ higher in physics. 1) stick to the old test with marking scheme which awards no marks 2) use old test but re-write the marking scheme with marks, it doesn't have to be consistent with other schools 3) write your own and submit for verification 4) use the new assessments due to be issued now, but will, like all other parts of the course be delivered late. And all this will be slightly pointless due to the fact , as of next year the UAS is not a necessary component of the course, and was never representative of the exam standard in any case. The scope of the Strategy should include a complete drilling down into the management and provision of duty of both the SQA and Education Scotland from top to bottom. a complete AUDIT of both organisations to find out why we are in this current situation and why guidance was mainly absent from the start then provided late and then later corrected for very obvious errors.

5. Give us your views on whether you think the actions already underway across the sectors on STEM fit well with the Strategy and will contribute positively to it.

Give us your views on whether you think the actions already underway across the sectors on STEM fit well with the Strategy and will contribute positively to it.
The major contribution to STEM subjects is base numeracy. Students have moved away from the ability to remember basic mathematical operations such as multiplication tables and number bonds to 20. These are not well embedded in our current crop of secondary pupils and as a result most of their working memory is taken up performing basic calculations that can be done subconsciously when trained enough. When number calculations are trained to be subconsciously performed it leaves the higher brain functions and working memory free to calculate and understand the impact of more difficult problems. This also extends to the basic recollection of scientific facts. Just as "Knowing your tables" gives you the blocks to perform more difficult work without effort, so does the depth of scientific fact. Many pupils currently in secondary education do not value nor are keen to memorise facts. The deterioration in this are is remarkable, and as a result the deterioration in ability to problem solve. Memory is not everything. but without it as a base, it is very difficult to make any progress

6. Tell us about activity currently ongoing – either included in this document or not – that you think could be adapted or stopped and why.

Tell us about activity currently ongoing – either included in this document or not – that you think could be adapted or stopped and why.
Adaptations: A complete inspection of Education Scotland and the entire provision provided since implementation of Curriculum for Excellence, matching their support against the implementation timetable to see if such an approach was well managed in a reasonble timescale. as with the SQA

9. Overall, do you think this Strategy is clear and action focused? Do you think that the actions that we propose to take nationally will achieve the aims and intended outcomes?

Overall, do you think this Strategy is clear and action focused? Do you think that the actions that we propose to take nationally will achieve the aims and intended outcomes?
Not unless the SQA, Education Scotland and Local Authorities are made to provide a coherent strategy and approach

10. Will this Strategy improve equity of outcomes? If not, tell us what else it should include, in particular for women and girls and other groups of people – disabled people, care leavers and minority ethnic communities.

Please select one item
Yes
Ticked No
Will this Strategy improve equity of outcomes? If not, tell us what else it should include, in particular for women and girls and other groups of people – disabled people, care leavers and minority ethnic communities.
as above

11. What could schools, colleges, universities, community learning and development, the voluntary sector, science engagement providers and museums do to support the areas for action?

What could schools, colleges, universities, community learning and development, the voluntary sector, science engagement providers and museums do to support the areas for action?
We are already doing it in schools as far as possible within the constraints of changing advice from above organisations

19. Tell us about what you are doing in your organisation, establishment or community that supports the aims and priorities of this Strategy.

Tell us about what you are doing in your organisation, establishment or community that supports the aims and priorities of this Strategy.
Teaching, using outside agencies such as BAE