The National Curriculum.

(199 Posts)
seeker Tue 11-Dec-12 12:13:59

People complain about it all the time.

Which bits of it do they not want their children to learn?

ReallyTired Sat 15-Dec-12 22:37:40

I think the national curriculum is a dramatic improvement on what happened 20 years ago. It may not be perfect, but it challenged schools in deprived areas to up their gain. I believe it has improved educational standards in the UK.

The national curriculum needs to be revamped for the 21st century and maybe slimmed down. The national curriculum suits 90% of children. There are issues with both the top and bottom 5% of children who may well need something different.

mrz Sat 15-Dec-12 22:42:56

TheOriginalSteamingNit it depends which exam syllabus the schools follow
Cambridge covers 1794- 1900
AQA is more social and economic focused
Edexcel England in the middle ages etc

seeker Sat 15-Dec-12 23:26:31

Whwt I don't understand about the history curriculum in both primary and Secondary is the obsession with WW11. By the time dd does her A level next year she will have covered it, in different forms, 3 times!

And the history all seems so episodic. I'm sure most primary children don't know which came first, the Egyptians, the Victorians or Ann Franck!

LaVolcan Sat 15-Dec-12 23:37:05

@seeker - history was always like this though, wasn't it? Jumping about from the Ancient Greeks, via the Bronze Age, Egyptians, then suddenly it's the Vikings, and then the Industrial Revolution. There was never any sense of the timelines or how things were happening in parallel. And of course, as has been said before, if you changed schools you could end up with the Romans 3 times and never 'do' the Vikings or whatever.

seeker Sat 15-Dec-12 23:45:15

Was it? I don't know- I was home educated by a history nut and spent ages doing time lines, and reading books like Our Island's Story..........!

seeker Sat 15-Dec-12 23:47:05

As evidenced by the fact that even though I intended to, I couldn't put my three examples in the wrong order!

BooksandaCuppa Sat 15-Dec-12 23:54:11

The key stage 3 history curriculum is mostly chronological though, isn't it? At least I know in both the school I work in and ds's independent school they start at 1066 going up to present day by the end of yr 9 (obviously leaving pre-middle ages to primary school!)

Ronaldo Sun 16-Dec-12 06:44:28

LaVolcan - I did not suggest or indicate that I am not aware that state schools cannot do as independents do vis challenging behaviour -nor that they would not like to do it.

Seeker - I am not setting this up as something to be proud of as you try to put it. I just wrote it as a fact (there you go again, putting in something that was never there).

However, I mentioned it because I do believe, without emotions, that teaching and learning for all DC is affected by pupils with challenging behaviour. It isn’t confined to just those classrooms where such DC are taught, it’s a whole school issue and it affects all behaviour through the school and outside. I think it changes the ethos. That’s why it is a significant difference between private and state schools.

I think it is unfortunate and IMHO really morally reprehensible that DC in state schools should not have the advantage of going to school in an environment free from such challenging behaviour. Being exposed (subjected) to such behaviour does not make them better people more able to cope, it just normalises behaviour that should not be accepted anywhere.

I personally think state schools should have the same rights as private ones. However, they do not, and hence, I do not want my own DC in state provision. It’s a significant factor in teaching and learning and the environment which promotes achievement (or lack of)

Neither LaVolcan am I unaware of where and how the NC came about or that it is an imposition on state schools. I did not agree with it when it started. I still do not see it as a way of providing a full and rounded education for any DC. Again it is unfortunate that it is imposed in state schools. But it is also a significant factor in the level and type of achievement for most DC. It has not in any way IMHO enhanced learning or educational standards since it was introduced. Hence it is not something I want to expose my DC to.

Hope that explains.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 07:01:47

I think that generally people haven't actually read it when they complain! I also agree with mrz that people confuse it with literacy/numeracy strategies and QCA units. It isn't the NC , it is the way that it is implemented.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 07:04:42

State schools can't have the same rights as private schools- they have to educate all DCs- they can't just wash their hands of those who don't fit. If they do the ultimate and expel a DC another school has to find a place for a fresh start.

Ronaldo Sun 16-Dec-12 07:05:47

Many more are dumped on us because their parents are ashamed of their lack of ability or they are challenging in some way behaviourally and we have to sort it out."

"DC thrive with us because of discipline and no DC with challenging behaviour. DC with challenging behaviour are invited to leave us very quickly."

aren't these two statements contradictory ...you admit in the second to failing

No Mrz.not contradictory at all. Those with behaviour issues either change very quickly or are invited to move on.

Let me give you an example of such a DS - (he was at that Scottish School where a certain Duke and his wife sent their first born - not mentioning names of schools here for reputation reasons) - the boy was challenging in his behaviour there.

He was invited to leave.

He went to another school of high repute. They also invited him to leave.

He came to us and we took him on the grounds that we could only accept him if he did not disrupt our classes. Unfortunately he lasted on morning with us before an incident (he told one of the teachers to "f* off” in his first lesson. He was out of school before the lunch time bell rang (and out of class before the first 20 mins was up).

He was then sent to a more minor school but o good reputation somewhere in North Devon. His parents it is rumoured agreed to pay triple fees and provide him with an LSA (although he did not have any kind of statement!) and he was taught virtually in isolation. He boarded because his poor frazzled DP did not want him home. Again he was not given great opportunities to mix with others unless he could behave himself. It was also told to me that most of the other pupils avoided him.

Most of our real success stories are DC who are sent to us because they are not top box sharp tools (although some are top drawer). Their parents do not want them seen to be failing educationally and in a private school that "shame" can remain secret. A shame (embarrassment).is what many such DP feel it is. These DC often accept discipline and find schools like ours places which are secure and certain in a world where their parents are always moving around and have little time for them.

And whilst their parents may want their DC to get a suitable education, they are not driven by it - so not engaged in the way is often suggested (after all if you are going to manage dad’s estate you don’t need qualifications do you?).

Many times their parents do not care about their education (as I called them CBA).

But challenging behaviour is not accepted. After all if you were paying 10K or more (even in a minor private school) for your DC to be educated would you want foul mouthed abusive and disruptive pupils with your child? (I doubt it). Its economics really - we remove the foul mouthed and challenging or we lose revenue from many more parents. who remove their DC instead.

seeker Sun 16-Dec-12 07:28:30

"He came to us and we took him on the grounds that we could only accept him if he did not disrupt our classes. Unfortunately he lasted on morning with us before an incident (he told one of the teachers to "f* off” in his first lesson. He was out of school before the lunch time bell rang (and out of class before the first 20 mins was up)."

So "sorting it out" means "Do what you're told or you're out on your ear" Or am I misinterpreting you again?

mrz Sun 16-Dec-12 07:39:49

I certainly didn't study WWII at either O or A level seeker.
The Primary NC says Britain since 1930, which many schools interpret as WWII but they could just as easily study the Space Race or an important figure.

Ronaldo Sun 16-Dec-12 07:44:18

So "sorting it out" means "Do what you're told or you're out on your ear" Or am I misinterpreting you again?

Whilst I prefer to phrase it differently (as I do not want to be emotive about it) it is a reasonable representation this time.

However, it is a policy which prepares DC forlife and achievement in the work place. After all no employer wants an employee who cannot do as they are told - and if you are disruptive you are soon told to collect your cards (P45).

Similarly in most social situations no one likes ill mannered people.

mrz Sun 16-Dec-12 07:48:55

*No Mrz.not contradictory at all. Those with behaviour issues either change very quickly or are invited to move on.*

sorry but I would consider I had failed professionally if I gave up on a child.

seeker Sun 16-Dec-12 07:57:22

grin at a school allowing 20 minutes to sort out a behavioural problem before giving up.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 07:58:18

I would certainly not have given up by lunchtime on the same day that he started!

Ronaldo Sun 16-Dec-12 07:58:39

No Mrz.not contradictory at all. Those with behaviour issues either change very quickly or are invited to move on.

sorry but I would consider I had failed professionally if I gave up on a child

Can I be really frank mrz? I dont want to offend but sometimes I feel its attitudes like that you express above that fails all our DC in the state system.

Its not failing a child to say "I think I (or we in a school) cannot deal with this DC. It means that we cannot provide that DC with whatever they need within our institution. To say otherwise is being unprofessional.

Not only that it fails all our other DC who deserve better.

Ronaldo Sun 16-Dec-12 08:00:08

I would certainly not have given up by lunchtime on the same day that he started!
We made the rules clear from the outset. What wouldyou have us do? move the goal posts? That is precisely why state schools fail all DC - it sends out the wrong message.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 08:01:24

The big difference, Ronaldo, is that you don't have to know or care what happens to the DC. The state still has to educate the excluded DC.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 08:02:42

I can't see why you even took him on in the first place- his track record made it highly unlikely that he would follow the rules!

seeker Sun 16-Dec-12 08:04:11

Yes of course if a school can't deal with a child then they have to go somewhere else, or the school needs more help.

But a school deciding it can't cope after 20 minute.........

cornycarrotshack Sun 16-Dec-12 08:05:21

At what point do you try to establish the causes of a child's behaviour Ronaldo?

'state schools fail all dc' - really?

cornycarrotshack Sun 16-Dec-12 08:06:49

'I can't see why you even took him on in the first place- his track record made it highly unlikely that he would follow the rules!'

They took him for the £££££ obviously.
The parents would still have to pay that term's fees.

exoticfruits Sun 16-Dec-12 08:16:37

Silly of me to miss that corny! grin

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