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The Rotten Heart of Education

'Political meddling' ruining learning in schools | Uk News | News | Telegraph
The curriculum in state schools in England has been stripped of its content and corrupted by political interference, according to a damning report by an influential, independent think-tank.

It warns of the educational apartheid opening up between the experience of pupils in the state sector and those at independent schools, which have refused to reduce academic content to make way for fashionable causes.

No major subject area has escaped the blight of political interference, according to the report published by Civitas.

"The traditional subject areas have been hijacked to promote fashionable causes such as gender awareness, the environment and anti-racism, while teachers are expected to help to achieve the Government's social goals instead of imparting a body of academic knowledge to their students," it says.
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History has become so divorced from facts and chronology that pupils might learn the new "skills and perspectives" through a work of fiction, such as Lord of the Rings, it says.
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Teenagers studying for GCSEs are being asked to write about the September 11 atrocities using Arab media reports and speeches from Osama bin Laden as sources without balancing material from America, it reveals.

In English, the drive for gender and race equality has led an exam board to produce a list of modern poems from around the world without a single poet from England or Wales being represented.

The new 21st-century science curriculum introduced last September substitutes debates on abortion, genetic engineering and the use of nuclear power for lab work and scientific inquiry, it says.

Designed to make science more popular, the results of a study show it has had the opposite effect, with pupils less interested in the subject and less keen to pursue it in the sixth form than they were under the previous, more fact-based lessons.

Future scientists will be even more likely to come from independent schools because the new GCSE courses will leave state pupils ill-quipped for further study, it says.

Most comprehensive schools are teaching the new science for examination next year but the vast majority of independent and grammar schools have seized the opportunity to continue to teach biology, chemistry and physics as separate subjects....


The Department for Education defended the curriculum changes and accused the Civitas report of being "based on a profound misunderstanding of the national curriculum and modern teaching methods".

"It is insulting to the hard work of pupils and teachers to claim that the education system is just a political football to promote political or social goals," said a spokesman.

It isn't insulting to those at the chalkface, they aren't the ones being criticised. It is the vast body of leeching bureaucrats and politicians who impose these policies. Shows like Brainiacs aren't popular because they hold debates on the rights of women scientists, they interest kids by showing what science can do, make and explode.

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"based on a profound misunderstanding of the national curriculum and modern teaching methods".

Actually I'd say the criticism was based on an all too profound understanding of the national curriculum and modern teaching methods.

At a guess I'd say there are still the same number of kids who have the apptitude and desire to become engineers and scientists as there were in previous generations. Sadly I suspect that the actual number who eventually become engineers and scientists will decrease dramatically solely because the British education system is failing them.

If you have not already done so head over to
http://www.wellingtongrey.net/articles/archive/2007-06-07--open-letter-aqa.html

to read about the wonders and deceit of modern physics teaching.

STB

This was pretty much my experience of school. Science wasn't too politicised but the rest is spot on.

insulting to the hard work of pupils and teachers - that rhetorical crap is just a straw-man redirect, that's a bunch of up-stuffed foo-foo hand-waving and handkerchiefs.

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