Bad Week for Wales…..

We started with the PISA report on education standards throughout the world.

The Pisa assessments of 15-year-olds show Wales falling further behind since the 2006 tests.
Wales teenagers ranked below average, alongside the Czech Republic, in reading.
Leighton Andrews called the results “unacceptable” and said everyone involved should be “alarmed”.
Wales again ranked lowest of the UK countries and is now cast adrift from England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Out of 67 countries taking part, Wales was ranked 38th for reading, 40th for maths and 30th for the tests for science.
Scotland was the best for reading and maths of the UK nations, ranked 15th and 21st, while England was top for science in the UK, ranked 16th.
It is now below average on all three measures and has scored worse than before in every category.

Education Minister Leighton Andrews not very happy:
From the Western Mail Welsh schools shamed in global league table:
Leighton says:

These results have made it clear that schools in Wales are simply not delivering well enough for students at all levels of ability.
There can be no alibis and no excuses. Schools, local authorities and ourselves as Government need to look honestly at these results and accept responsibility for them.”

(England, Scotand and NI statistically very close)

And then the economy’s gone all to hell:
Again from the Western Mail:
Wales confirmed as poorest nation in the UK. The measure used is Gross Value Added – the value of output less the value of
intermediate consumption – the contribution to Natonal Wealth.
It’s £14,842 per person, 74.3% of UK average GVA cf Scotland @ 98.8% of UK average and Northern Ireland @ 79.1%. More worrying is the trend:
1989 – 85.4%, 1999- 77.4% 2010 – 74.3%.
On the “bright side” it looks like we’ll qualify for a shedful more European Funding – Remember Michael Edwardes of British Leyland fame ? His famous quote from his Wiki

If the Cabinet do not have the wit and imagination to reconcile our industrial needs with the fact of North Sea oil, they would do better to leave the bloody stuff in the ground.

For the good European funding has done our economy we must construct a strategy before wasting anymore of it. We’ve probably taken the environmental criteria (that the funding is restricted by) a little by the book. Spend the lot on Motorways, Railways and Airports I reckon….