The cabinet reshuffle has led to changes at the DfE. Schools minister Nick Gibb (Con) has gone and David Laws (Lib Dem) has replaced him in several areas. This means that one of the key architects of the new curriculum has been moved. But looking on the DfE website it seems that the responsibility for curriculum development is not going to David Laws. This now falls to Elizabeth Truss who is conservative MP for S West Norfolk. A brief look at her background reveals someone who believes in the importance of Maths and Science (hooray) but may need some advice about what helps children’s learning. She sees long division at primary school as good and chunking numbers as bad. See her article in today’s Telegraph http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/9517706/We-must-shift-science-out-of-the-geek-ghetto.html Children challenged with tough exciting demands is what we all want – children left feeling stupid, perplexed and believing that maths and science is beyond them is not. Politicians who want the best learning for our children are fine but politicians who listen and learn from research about the way children learn most effectively are so much better.
Whatever, the reshuffle provides a really good opportunity for MPs to take a different tack. I am told that it makes a real difference to the way they react if they have a full postbag. It is certainly a good time to push for change. As I said before, feel free to use any parts of the blog (letter to MP/summary of concerns etc) if it helps.
But please support everyone who has to teach and learn about primary science. We need to get some changes to this curriculum.
Do all you can.