The Donaldson Report- A New Era for Wales?

Leave a comment

June 30, 2016 by dragonflytraining


A new curriculum is on the cards for Wales in the near future, and according to Professor Graham Donaldson, it should be defined as including all of the learning experiences and assessment activities planned in pursuit of agreed purposes of education. It should transcend all learning from the age of three through to sixteen, and replace Key Stages with “progression steps”, in order for learning to be more seamless.


Although Professor Donaldson has identified real strengths in the curriculum in Wales (such as the Foundation Phase and the commitment to the Welsh language), he has also identified its shortcomings. The current curriculum has been relatively the same since the late 1980s, thus making it overloaded, complicated and somewhat outdated in parts.


The new Donaldson Curriculum aims to enable children and young people to promote sustained attention to the development and application of knowledge and skills in literacy, numeracy and digital competence; ensure appropriate emphasis on the welsh language and culture, and encourage stimulating and engaging teaching and learning.


The main points of the Donaldson Report are as follows:

  • Incorporates all learners aged three to 16, from Foundation Phase to Key Stage 4 (GCSE)
  • Replaces existing key stages with “progression steps”, relating broadly to expectations at ages five, eight, 11, 14 and 16
  • Organised into six “areas of learning and experience”: expressive arts; health and wellbeing; humanities; languages, literacy and communication; Maths and numeracy; and science and technology
  • Introduces three “cross-curriculum responsibilities” – literacy, numeracy and digital competence – that would be expected of all teachers
  • Teaching of the Welsh language remains compulsory up to the age of 16, but new expectation that learners gain “transactional competence” by end of studies
  • Welsh-medium schools to act as hubs for the Welsh language, supporting teachers and practitioners in English-medium schools
  • External, standardised testing to provide important benchmarking information – but its frequency “kept to a minimum” in view of its impact on the curriculum and teaching and learning
  • Wales’ national school categorisation system to be adjusted to reflect the recommendations of the review


Here are Dragonfly Training, we are adapting all our hotel-based and in-school courses to coincide with this new Donaldson curriculum.


Our brand new course, Implementing the Donaldson Report in the Classroom, is designed to allow busy teachers the opportunity to consider what this all means to them in terms of day to day teaching in real classrooms.


Delivered by expert trainer Steve Garnett, it is designed to offer suggestions around the things individual subject teacher can control. So, if you are interested in having the opportunity to consider not only the implications of the report, but more importantly, what it might look like in your lessons, then this is the course for you!


This course aims to:

  • Help you familiarise yourself with the new language and terminology of the report


  • Focus on the main priorities from the report: Four Key Purposes, pedagogy and assessment


  • Demonstrate what lessons look like that embed the Cross Curriculum Responsibilities


  • Offer suggestions about what Achievement Outcomes might look like


For more information on this course, please visit our website, Alternatively, you can contact us on 02920 711 787.

Information taken from:;
Image taken from: 




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

%d bloggers like this: