UK head teachers want to drop National Curriculum -- including history -- in schools





A range of school subjects could be swept away under new teaching proposals.
The attack on the National Curriculum, which has dictated school timetables for 20 years, could spell the end of separate classes in history, geography, literature, languages, art and music.

Instead, schools would be allowed to decide how they teach big themes such as global warming, conflict and healthy living.

The present list of subjects would be reduced to little more than English, mathematics and computing. The National Association of Head Teachers, responding to a select committee inquiry into whether the National Curriculum is "fit for purpose", said its structure of 14 compulsory subjects should be replaced by a "minimum framework" that would be "skills and competence-based, rather than prescriptive and knowledge-based".

Growing calls for flexibility, coupled with a series of curriculum reviews ordered by ministers, represent a serious threat to the future of the traditional timetable.

Academics defended the National Curriculum, saying it was the best guarantee that children were exposed to vital areas of study.

"We haven't arrived at these subjects by accident," said Prof Alan Smithers, of Buckingham University. "We have discovered a number of ways of making sense of the world which have been formulated as the sciences, humanities, social sciences and expressive art. It is reasonable to require young people to engage in these vital subjects for a spell of time."


comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe to our mailing list