Dead languages beat live subjects in EBac madness

28th January 2011 at 00:00

Gerard Kelly's craven editorial bemoans the "anaemic education" to which so many "disadvantaged kids" were subjected, saying they were forced to follow subjects which had "dubious value" to employers and were unpopular with parents. This is an attitude which sadly proliferates with so many people who comment on and judge education.

Thankfully there are voices who are informed enough to rectify such right-wing mythology. Yet, in stating objections, they face being branded a "leftie".

Mr Kelly talks about the EBac bringing common sense, yet this is the one commodity it lacks. As Professor John White ("Gove's on the Bac foot with a white paper stuck in 1868", January 21) points out, the EBac is the brain-child of right-wing think-tank Civitas and a copy of the curriculum in 1904. Others have called it a grammar school education of the 1950s. How is this common sense?

Where are the employers screaming at us to produce more school leavers who can recite the kings and queens of England since Magna Carta? How is that going to equip them for the world of 2020?

Just wait until the first couple of cohorts go through options processes and are told certain subjects are not available. Just wait until the parents of young people desperate to study music or drama or design and technology can't do that - even though it is their child's lifelong ambition. Those parents won't see this as common sense.

Phil Parker, Teacher, Worcestershire.

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