Teaching unions have warned that schools may face difficulties with teaching the ‘rigorous, engaging and tough’ new curriculum and have criticised how it has been implemented.
The start of this term saw millions of pupils beginning Michael Gove’s new national curriculum in all local authority primary and secondary schools. With significant changes in Maths, English and Computing, it puts greater emphasis in skills such as essay writing, mathematical modelling and computer programming, the BBC reports.
Teaching unions have said that although teachers have worked hard to prepare for the new curriculum, the timetable for its introduction is unrealistic. “One of the mistakes in the implementation of the curriculum is that it’s all being implemented at once,” Russell Hobby from the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) said. “In maths you need to learn the early concepts before you learn the later concepts, so there is a problem that there will be children who have not learned the earlier concepts before being expected to learn the more demanding ones.”
Jill Stokoe from the ATL warned that many teachers feel their school is not prepared to teach the new curriculum. “Teachers are saying they haven’t had enough information and some people really haven’t got to grips with the new curriculum. What we are saying to them is to use their judgment,” she said.
The president of the Girls’ Schools Association, Alice Phillips, warned that poorly trained teachers have “little or no grounding” in many key aspects of the curriculum, in particular English language, grammar and maths, the Telegraph reports. Mrs Phillips claimed that many staff are being forced to sign up for “hastily arranged training courses” and are even “burning the midnight oil” in order to prepare themselves.
Do you feel prepared to teach the new curriculum? Why join the discussion on the Eteach community, to share tips and ideas on how you’re getting ready with your peers.