Teaching Secondary Science: Constructing Meaning and Developing Understanding

By Keith Ross; Liz Lakin et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 23
Inclusion and Science for
All: ‘Every Child Matters’

Chapter overview

The focus of this chapter is on the need for our science curriculum to cater for
everyone and to help every pupil achieve more. Although this has been an aim for
many years, the wider implications of the Every Child Matters (ECM) policy insti-
gated in 2004, had brought this to the fore. Although with changing government
the term ECM is no longer recognised the principles underpinning ECM remain as
significant as ever. To that end we begin by explaining the philosophy behind ECM
and exploring how this relates directly to the science teacher in the classroom/labo-
ratory. We then focus on specific areas beginning with special educational needs
(SEN). We recognise the unique benefit science has to offer SEN across the spec-
trum, and emphasise the importance of differentiation and equality of opportunity
for all. The major role of assessment and recording as a means of informing plan-
ning, is discussed. We then consider issues of race and gender.


Science for all: ‘Every Child Matters’

It was the tragic death of Victoria Climbié (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Victoria_ Climbié) in 2000 that first shook the nation into action, and exposed serious failings in the way services protected children. This together with a series of government initiated inquiries led to the Children Act 2004, which underpins the ECM policy. The policy relied on schools, health and social services, police and other agencies all working together to ensure the welfare of the nation’s 11 million plus 0–19 year olds through sharing information and providing services for families. Essentially it freed teachers to concentrate on teaching and learning while referring the many problems pupils bring with them to the relevant experts. The long-term aim at the instigation of the ECM policy was that all children should be offered access to the extended services by 2010. In 2010, however, the change in government brought changes in focus and with it, changes in terminology; ‘Every Child Matters’ was replaced by ‘Help children achieve more’. ECM remains primary legislation but is no longer in the

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