Support for NUT recommendations

9th May 2008 at 01:00
The authors of the NUT's four core recommendations to Sir Jim Rose's primary curriculum review ("Could the arts be as important as maths?", TES, May 2) could easily have been reading the visionary All Our Futures report from 1999 on creativity in education, and the Woods Report (2005), which detailed how mainstream schooling could learn from the Steiner curriculum
The authors of the NUT's four core recommendations to Sir Jim Rose's primary curriculum review ("Could the arts be as important as maths?", TES, May 2) could easily have been reading the visionary All Our Futures report from 1999 on creativity in education, and the Woods Report (2005), which detailed how mainstream schooling could learn from the Steiner curriculum. Ironically, both of these excellent reports were sponsored by the former DfES, and both have predictably long since been gathering dust in the department's vaults.

The eminently sensible proposals to render drama and music as important as other subjects, to create a 5-14 curriculum, to grant the curriculum "guidance status" only, and to make years 1 and 2 less formal could have been lifted straight from a Steiner Waldorf pedagogy text book. One critic was recently quoted as saying that anything the NUT says is automatically and by definition rejected or ignored by the Government. For me, that alone is good enough reason to argue that anything the NUT recommends should be taken very seriously indeed.

Dr Richard House, Research Centre for Therapeutic Education, Roehampton University (and not a member of the NUT).

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