Changing needs

17th August 2001 at 01:00
THE inspectorate is now happy to go along with curricular flexibility, as even the Educational Institute of Scotland acknowledges. The education directorate is also signed up. And Learning and Teaching Scotland, which presides over the curriculum, points to the discretion schools have within the new 5-14 and secondary guidelines.

So the Scottish Executive's latest thoughts on the curriculum (page one) seem to be stating no more than the obvious: schools should be, and are increasingly, free to respond to the circumstances of pupils. But, in his campaign to be seen as the cuddliest Education Minister ever, Jack McConnell clearly believes that stating the obvious has its advantages.

The Executive's circular, however, can be no more than a holding statement. Pressure is building for a root-and-branch review of this whole area. There are challenges to the subject basis of the curriculum and to the time-honoured notions of "breadth and balance" in children's learning in favour of introducing more genuine choice and diversity into schools - if, indeed, schools as we know them are to be the models for the future. As experience of the critical skills approach shows (page three), there is a yearning for fundamental change in a profession not particularly noted for embracing it.

But it has to be change that works and The TES Scotland is pleased this week to start stimulating that debate.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today