The question posed by examiners

4th July 2008 at 01:00
The year is 2028, and society has changed
The year is 2028, and society has changed. The economy of the UK is now based almost entirely on tourism and the production of television programmes, in particular game shows and virtual reality series. Consequently, the secondary school curriculum concentrates on hospitality studies and media studies.

You are now in your late thirties and are a successful member of the management team of a large hotel group. Although you studied physics up to AEA standard at school back in 2008 and followed this with a first-class honours degree in physics, you were among the last to follow such a course.

Science has not been taught beyond primary school level for a decade. Only a few universities have science facilities, and these are very small. Physics is treated as being irrelevant, as are the great pioneers such as Newton and Einstein.

You are very disturbed at the way things are going. Your daughter is about to go to secondary school. Write a letter to the board of governors of your daughter's prospective school emphasising the importance of continuing the study of physics, at least in the early years of secondary school. Illustrate your letter by outlining Newton's laws of motion and pointing out practical applications of the laws which your daughter may have experienced at her primary school, perhaps without realising how they related to the laws.

Remember that it is likely that no member of the board has your own background in physics; most will have stopped studying science at the end of their primary school careers.

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