Curriculum 'Won't Teach Anything' to Scots Pupils

Daily Mail (London), April 13, 2009 | Go to article overview

Curriculum 'Won't Teach Anything' to Scots Pupils


Byline: Jane Borland

A MAJOR shake-up in the way children are taught in Scotland's schools was yesterday condemned as 'anti-intellectual' by one of the country's leading educationalists.

The SNP's controversial reform of the Scottish education system will see children taught about text messaging in English lessons and teachers told to focus on pupils' 'enjoyment' rather than teaching them facts.

Now Chris Woodhead, England's former chief inspector for schools, has launched a blistering attack on the [pounds sterling]15million review, branding it a 'curriculum for ignorance'.

He warned that the new syllabus was 'hopelessly utopian' and will weaken an already failing Scottish education system by leaving pupils bereft of general knowledge.

Despite rocketing truancy and indiscipline in schools, some of the pillars of factual learning will be swept away under the new curriculum to make pupils 'effective contributors' and 'confident individuals'.

Mr Woodhead argued that the proposals will devalue teaching and further erode standards, and accused education minister Fiona Hyslop of imposing the 'fashionable' educational theories on to teachers.

He said: 'It is a curriculum of ignorance which will further weaken an already-weakened education system.

'This is a profoundly anti-intellectual approach to education. If I were a parent in Scotland, I would write today to my child's school to ask whether this Curriculum for Excellence is going to be dumped in the nearest recycling bin.

'Then I would write to my MSP to ask how much it cost to produce this rubbish and when the Scottish government is going to come up with sensible proposals to raise standards. …

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