The House of Lords committee on education for 11 to 16-year-olds has published a new report entitled Requires improvement: urgent change for 11-16 education. It argues that education for 11 to 16-year-olds is too focused on rote learning with insufficient opportunities to pursue arts and technical subjects.
It also calls for the English Baccalaureate (EBacc), a performance measure that pushes schools towards a small group of academic GCSE subjects, excluding arts subjects, to be scrapped in order to reverse the decline of arts subjects in schools.
The report recommends that schools and teachers be allowed to offer more varied learning experiences, and that there should be more opportunities to study creative, cultural, vocational and technical subjects.
We welcome the constructive suggestions in the report, which we hope will prompt further discussion and review
The report was published days after Government data revealed that only 27% of the Department for Education’s target for secondary trainee music teachers has been met this year.
MU National Organiser for Education, Chris Walters, said:
“We welcome this new report from the Lords, which shows the extent to which experienced parliamentarians disagree with the Government’s flawed approach to education. We also welcome the constructive suggestions in the report, which we hope will prompt further discussion and review.
“The Department for Education’s recruitment of just 27% of its target for new classroom music teachers sadly shows how unappealing a career in music teaching has become – understandably so, given music’s precarious status in schools.
“It is time to reverse the decline in arts subjects in schools and restore a broad curriculum for all, with a teaching workforce that is appropriately supported and valued.”