Bill Summary: Curriculum and Assessment (Wales) Bill (11/12/2020)

Published 11/12/2020   |   Last Updated 27/05/2021   |   Reading Time minutes

This Bill Summary was originally published on 4 August 2020. It is being reposted ahead of the Stage 1 debate in Plenary on 15 December 2020.

The debate on the general principles of the Bill is the first of four stages to the Senedd’s legislative process but concludes the substantive scrutiny of the Bill. Three Senedd Committees have reported at Stage 1:

The Children, Young People and Education (CYPE) Committee supports the general principles of the Bill and the purpose-led approach of the new Curriculum for Wales but is concerned about implementation and whether all children across Wales will get the same opportunities and experiences from their education.

The CYPE Committee has made 66 recommendations. These focus on seeking the right balance between local flexibility and national consistency, and making sure that existing inequalities are not made any worse. The Committee recognises that the Bill’s approach means that the new curriculum will not be uniform across all schools but urges that it must still be consistent.

4 August 2020

The Welsh Government introduced the Curriculum and Assessment (Wales) Bill to the Senedd on 6 July. The Bill is currently at Stage 1 of the Senedd’s legislative process and is being scrutinised by the Children, Young People and Education Committee.

If passed, the Bill will provide the statutory foundation for the Welsh Government’s reform of the curriculum for 3 to 16 year olds. It will replace the existing national curriculum in Wales, which was established in 1988 on an England and Wales basis, with a new Curriculum for Wales.

The Welsh Government intends to phase the introduction of the new curriculum from September 2022.

This paper summarises the provisions of the Bill, highlighting key aspects and relevant documents, and provides some policy background.

Read the paper here: Bill Summary: Curriculum and Assessment (Wales) Bill (PDF, 810KB)


Article by Michael Dauncey, Senedd Research, Welsh Parliament