Skip to main content

Is curriculum design a ‘dictatorship’?

In England, the national curriculum can be subject to the whims of the latest education secretary – and the last time it was reviewed, critics claimed there was a lack of teacher input. Wouldn’t it be sensible to put curriculum design into the hands of teachers rather than politicians? Here, Kate Parker takes a look at Finland’s review process, which empowers teachers to regularly update their curriculum in order to keep pace with the new skills students need in a fast-changing world

What would happen if teachers designed the curriculum?

England has been “flip-flopping” about its schools’ curriculum for three decades.

That is the damning verdict of a key participant in the most recent review of our national curriculum.

Professor Mary James’ problem is that the decision about when to change the curriculum, and how, depends entirely on the current secretary of state for education. “Because of our four-year, five-year political cycle, we don’t have consistency,” says the former Cambridge education academic.

“We should think about creating in education a kind of broad board of stakeholders so that sensible decisions can be made ...

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.

Subscribe now