Category Archives: Curriculum

What curriculum do young people need?

  For the last 30 years, the school curriculum in England has been imposed on teachers top-down. Teachers were not regarded as knowledgeable and were simply expected to “deliver” what politicians decided. The current version, launched by Michael Gove in … Continue reading

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Creative arts – a class issue

Michael Gove’s destruction of the creative and performing arts is an indelible stain on  this Government’s record. Rich experiences in art, music, drama and media should be the entitlement of all young people. Creative subjects and activities provide an emotional … Continue reading

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SATs tests are still a shocking failure

Despite intensive test preparation and enormous stress for children and teachers, Key Stage 2 SATs tests for 2018 are a disaster once again. Figures published today show that only 64% of children passed Reading, Writing and Maths. That means 1 … Continue reading

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Challenging the tyranny of the Phonics Check

It is hard to compete with Margaret Clark’s tenacity in challenging the deeply flawed Phonics Screening Check along with  schools minister Nick Gibb’s dogmatic support of Synthetic Phonics. After editing two books in a single year, she has just completed a … Continue reading

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Knowledge, skills and ‘dead white males’

Comment by Terry Wrigley, Northumbria University In a recent debate Mary Bousted, joint General Secretary of the NEU, has made a bold challenge to the assumptions behind the current National Curriculum. She argued against its backwardness, narrow nationalism, and neglect … Continue reading

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Protecting children from primary school tests

The damage caused by primary school testing to children’s education and wellbeing is now very clear. Among other effects, it has helped to create a crisis in children’s mental health. As we know, large numbers of children are now suffering … Continue reading

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Will anything but a boycott stop the tests?

The Reclaiming Schools network has played a significant role in exposing the damage caused by high-stakes testing, including our pamphlet ‘The Mismeasurement of Learning‘, widely circulated in the NUT and elsewhere, various series of blogposts carrying detailed analysis from specialist … Continue reading

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A lesson from Sergeant Pepper

A comment on creativity and the curriculum by Dr Pam Jarvis, Reader in Childhood, Youth and Education, Leeds Trinity University A few nights ago whilst nodding on the sofa, I was abruptly awoken by the BBC documentary Sgt Pepper’s Musical … Continue reading

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The crisis in secondary schools: where is it leading?

All kinds of schools in England are facing damaging budget cuts. Large meetings are being held all over the country where parents and teachers together are showing their opposition to Government cuts. Every concerned teacher or parent should join the … Continue reading

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Harold Rosen: an inspiration for teachers today

announcing an inspiring new book Harold Rosen: Writings on life, language and learning 1958-2008 Harold Rosen was one of the great reformers of English teaching. His work has just been republished, providing a challenge to the deadening practices of the National Curriculum – its obsession … Continue reading

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