HISTORY-POOR RECORD IN SOME SCHOOLS-BUT EBACC MAY HELP
HISTORY –POOR RECORD IN SOME SCHOOLS
57 Secondary schools last year failed to enter a single pupil for GCSE History
Professor Simon Schama, who is a government adviser on History wrote, in 2011, that ‘Academies – where history is discouraged, or even ruled out, in favour of more exam-friendly utilitarian options – must be persuaded to teach it, and for more than a trivial hour a week. Drive-by history is no history at all. Ideally, no pupils should be able to abandon the subject at 14.’
History teaching in schools has been in decline since the 1990s. In 2011, 57 mainstream maintained secondary schools in England entered no pupils at all for a full course GCSE or iGCSE in history or ancient history. The Government hopes that the introduction the English baccalaureate (Ebacc) will encourage schools to increase opportunities for pupils to study history as part of a core of key academic subjects . Early evidence suggests that the measure is already having a positive impact on pupils’ subject choices. The Ebacc was introduced as an additional measure in the performance tables published in January 2011. Pupils who achieve a GCSE grade C or better in English, maths, a language, history or geography, and two sciences achieve the EBacc. In 2010, 31 per cent of pupils at the end of KS4 were entered for history GCSE. But from September 2011, 39 per cent of pupils taking GCSEs in 2013 will be doing history GCSE – an increase of 26% in the numbers of pupils studying GCSE history and back to the 1995 level.
However, a new report from the centre right think tank Politeia suggests that Lessons in history are being increasingly undermined by an “incoherent, fragmented and repetitive” curriculum that leaves most children feeling “bored”. The study said: “At present, the artificiality of the questions around sources produces formulaic answers of dubious intellectual or academic value.” The study levelled a series of criticisms at the content and structure of the system, claiming History was often “too boring” for schoolchildren. This rather suggests that subjects’ recovery may not be sustained unless much more thought goes into the way the subject is structured and taught.
Pupils studying History will probably have come across both good and bad teachers. A bad teacher can turn the subject into a dull exercise in by rote learning. But a good teacher can give it shades of colour, and depth, making it entirely relevant too, firing the imagination, helping individuals to develop analytical, and research skills along the way. Bur rather too many pupils feel that when they are tested the questions often require very little detailed knowledge or understanding of the subject, and so there is little incentive to drill down into the subject, to a depth where the real rewards can be found.
1 Comment »
Leave a Reply
- PAYING FOR RESULTS-CAN IT HELP RAISE PERFORMANCE- OR DOES IT CORRUPT THE LOVE OF LEARNING?
- PROSPECTS JOINS MUTUAL JOINT VENTURE TO DELIVER PUBLIC SERVICES-GOVERNMENT KEEN ON EMPLOYEE OWNED MUTUALS DELIVERING PUBLIC SERVICES
- PROFESSOR TONY WATTS RESIGNS FROM THE NATIONAL CAREERS COUNCIL
- EDISON LEARNING AND THE NAHT UNION LAUNCH A SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT INITIATIVE WITH DFE BACKING
- THE FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT OF ACADEMIES-WHAT HAPPENS IF THERE ARE CONCERNS?
- PUBLIC ACCOUNTS COMMITTEE REPORT ON ACADEMIES-SOME CONCERNS OVER FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT
- CAIRNS OF BRIGHTON COLLEGE BACKS ACADEMIES
- IS CAREERS ADVICE IN SCHOOLS EFFECTIVE OR IS IT TOO EARLY TO SAY?
- LEMOVS TEACH LIKE A CHAMPION -TOP TECHNIQUES USED BY THE BEST TEACHERS
- THE PUPIL PREMIUM AND SPECIAL SCHOOLS
- EDUCATION EXPORTS-NEW GOVERNMENT STRATEGY IN THE WINGS?
- INSPECTING ACADEMY CHAINS-ON THE AGENDA
- Careers advice and Guidance
- Charity Status
- Charter School
- Coalition Education Policy
- Conservative policy
- Discipline and Truancy
- early years learning
- education market
- education quangos
- education reform
- Free schools
- higher education
- Home Education
- independent schools
- primary schools
- Public Services Reform
- published letters
- Pupil Support
- quality assurance
- quality assurance and inspection
- school governance
- secondary schools
- Secure Estate
- SPECIAL NEEDS
- teachers and teaching
- Think tanks
- us education system
- Youth policy