ACfE - we need balanced debate, not weak arguments

15th May 2009 at 01:00
Raymond Viola, St Ninian Terrace, Glasgow

As a mature undergraduate student, I have been reserving judgment on the many opinions surrounding A Curriculum for Excellence; after all, my classroom experience as an adult is somewhat limited. However, my silence has been broken by the archaic opinions expressed in the anonymous criticism of Brian Boyd (April 24).

I started my journey into teaching because I wanted creative autonomy (score 1 for ACfE) to encourage creative and critical thinking in my future pupils (2 points for ACfE). That said, I am reluctant to label A Curriculum for Excellence radical, in as much as a truly radical approach would have involved scrapping all the old rules and starting from scratch.

In any case, there is great irony in the letter I refer to which stated: "Learning how to learn is not an essential skill; children are in school to learn the knowledge that teachers impart". That actually epitomises what is wrong with education. I fear for this person's pupils when they leave the class, not knowing how to figure out things for themselves. How does your correspondent suppose pupils will learn anything other than one teacher's narrow view, regardless of whether they are correct or not?

Let us have a balanced debate, rather than discrediting the antagonists of ACfE with such weak arguments.

Raymond Viola, St Ninian Terrace, Glasgow.

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