Royal Society President responds to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's maths education reforms

04 January 2023

In response to today's announcement from Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister, Sir Adrian Smith, President of the Royal Society said: “Maths, data, statistics and numeracy are essential skills for a modern world, whether for the workplace or for playing an active role in society. If we want our economy to thrive and young people to be prepared for well paid jobs, we need a radical overhaul of our education system that will include all young people doing some level of maths to 18 years of age. The PM understands this and today’s announcement is welcome.

“While we have some elements in place to increase maths and data skills, we need to upgrade the post-16 approach as part of wider reform at secondary and post-16. It is time for a baccalaureate style system that will give a broader education than the exceptionally narrow A-levels.

“Radical reform of the education system will not be easy and will take time but we need to get started now and build a cross party approach with support from teachers, students, parents and employers. This matters too much to be a political football that could be punctured by the ebb and flow of politics.”