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Will Citizenship and Design & Technology Survive the Curriculum Review?

Friday 8th April 2011

There are fears that design and technology may be one of the more marginal subjects removed from the list of those that have to be studied by secondary school pupils as part of the national curriculum. Also Citizenship may still be under threat too.

The deadline for submissions to the curriculum review launched in January by the education secretary, Michael Gove, is next Thursday 14 April. The Department for Education is bracing itself for a flood of criticism. The coalition government wants to change focus on to a range of core subjects such as English, maths and science.  

The Guardian reports today that James Dyson, one of the leading design entrepreneurs in Britain’s manufacturing industry, says that the future for the design and technology sector will be bleak if the subject is downgraded in schools as a result of the curriculum review.

Ofsted is a supporter of Design & Technology but acknowledges that the curriculum must be modernised. The same is true for Citizenship, although the subject may be under threat as a statutory subject, only 29% of education advisors, and teachers, said their school would continue to teach citizenship if it was made non-statutory and 56 per cent were unsure. However, according to 85 per cent of teachers, studying Citizenship has improved the understanding of, and relationships with, communities beyond the school. Pupils learn about rights, the legal system, parliamentary democracy, and the diverse and global nature of life in Citizenship lessons.


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