By Dr. Matthew Wilkinson with one comment
On Saturday, 28th January Mohammed Amin, patron, and Matthew Tariq Wilkinson, principal researcher, attended the Better History Conference at Anglia Ruskin University organised by the Better History Forum lead by Dr. Sean Lang. The conference explored the future of History in schools in the context of the current National Curriculum Review for History.
Mr. Tim Oates, Director of the Expert Panel of the National Curriculum Review, gave the first keynote talk which called for a National Curriculum that would last for 30 years to put an end to “faddish-ness” in the curriculum. He also made a detailed procedural outline of the way that the National Curriculum Review works. He said that the previous 2007 Review had swung much too far in favour of skills and away from core knowledge.
The second keynote was given by Dr. Sean Lang who explained that the Better History Forum’s call for a return to narrative did not necessarily mean to a national narrative, but rather that children be taught the fast-disappearing historian’s skill of narrative construction.
Crucially for the Curriculum for Cohesion project the occasion provided the occasion for Matthew and Amin to introduce themselves to Tim Oates, Director of the Expert Panel of the National Curriculum Review, and the civil servant in charge of History, Marc Cavey. They expressed great interest in the Report of Curriculum for Cohesion and asked us to liaise with the discussion team for History. This means that once we have submitted our report we ought to be directly involved with the decision-making process for History.