Foundation pilots are no surprise

I refer to the article "More pilot play is shock to schools", (TES Cymru, February 16).

The accusation that new schools and settings were only made aware of the intention to include them two weeks ago is simply untrue. Directors of education have been kept fully informed.

Letters outlining proposals were sent out last November, and this was reinforced on December 4 when I launched the Building the Foundation Phase action plan.

New Early Start schoolssettings will be provided with additional resources, including funding, to ensure the required adult-pupil ratio. And we are currently in discussions about staffing.

We have produced comprehensive information to support settings since 2005, and the document Teaching and Learning in the Foundation Phase will be with them by September 2008.

The development of literacy skills is key to the foundation curriculum, with two of the seven areas of learning focusing on language, literacy, communication skills and bilingualism.

* Editor's reply: Ms Davidson refers to comments made in the article by Geraint Davies, Welsh secretary of education union NASUWT.

Jane Davidson Minister for education, lifelong learning and skills

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