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A Recipe for mediocrity

We are 10 weeks away from the beginning of the senior phase of Curriculum for Excellence course and teachers across Scotland are increasingly worried.

There is no solution to the dilemma of the National 45 dash, reduced to five subjects, as opposed to the more sensible 2+2+2 model. Creating a situation in which pupils have to work towards National 4s in all of their subjects and declaring it a "broad general education" is not only dishonest, it is a curriculum for mediocrity.

Learning needs to take place in a supportive and open environment where pupils engage with a well-prepared and supported course.

A classroom where 50 per cent of pupils are unwilling participants because they prefer other subjects and resent having to be in course B, with a teacher writing the course one week ahead of the classwork, is a recipe for something - and that something is certainly not what I, or any of my colleagues, would describe as "excellence".

Ann Ballinger, general secretary, Scottish Secondary Teachers' Association (SSTA).

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