National Curriculum review – What should we teach our children?

The Education Secretary, Michael Gove

The National Curriculum is to be changed yet again and we at Wolverhampton University have been invited to respond to the consultation. Why another change? And should we bother to respond asks Angela Gault.

The body that would normally undertake this process, the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency (QCDA), has been abolished leaving this responsibility and power in the hands of the Department for Education.  The National Curriculum will impact initially on those of us working in teacher education, with teachers, and then, finally the children. We will have to manage any change, and the consequences, day-by-day in our classrooms. If we don’t agree with the outcome then working with those tensions will impact upon our professional identity, our professional development and most important of all the future life chances of our children and young people.  Perhaps even more importantly are the impacts the National Curriculum will have on all of us – both in education and outside. Society will have to live with the consequences of its reform. It will affect your children, your family, your future and the futures of millions of children and young people.

Aren’t these good enough reasons to have a say? We know that Michael Gove wants more children from the poorest backgrounds to follow in his footsteps and go to Oxford and Cambridge. We all agree that family background should not be the sole determinant of future life chances.

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