SCETT KNOWLEDGE SUMMIT:
What Should We Teach?
Friday 23 November 2012, 12.30 – 5.30 pm
Nunn Hall, Institute of Education, London, WC1 OAL
£25 / £15
(reduced rate for student teachers, concessions and SCETT members)
A half-day conference that will explore knowledge, subjects and the curriculum
To purchase a ticket please click here
Tickets can purchased by invoice or by credit card
12.30 - Registration
1 pm - Session One:
Is Subject Knowledge Power?
Most would agree that it is the job of teachers to introduce pupils to subject knowledge in some form, but rarely do we reflect on its origins, authority and power. Consequently teachers are often ill prepared when pupils quite reasonably ask why a poem, theory, or topic must be taught. Sadly, students’ quite healthy skepticism is today reinforced by a wider cynicism, which promotes a jaundiced, and sometimes downright fearful, view of subject knowledge. But is it true, as some have argued, that subject knowledge empowers?
Opening keynote presentation by
Professor Michael Young
(Institute of Education, London),
with Professor Dennis Hayes
(University of Derby) responding
2.10 pm - Coffee / tea
2.40 pm - Session Two:
Who Hung the Humanities?
There is something deeply paradoxical in the ‘crisis of the humanities’, as whilst the public seems to have a near limitless desire for popular history, literary book clubs, and exotic food and travel, the life force of the academic humanities appears to be fading. Is government to blame? Perhaps the disciplinary experts have dug their own graves? Or maybe students are less interested in the humanities because they find humanity itself less enchanting?
a panel discussion with
Dr Seán Lang
(Anglia Ruskin University),
Professor David Lambert
(Institute of Education, London),
Dr Jo Saxton
(Director, The Curriculum Centre,
author Twenty-two Things Excellent Schools Do),
Alka Sehgal Cuthbert
(PhD researcher, education, University of Cambridge)
3.50 pm - Coffee / tea
4.10 pm - Session Three
A Curriculum of the Dead, for the Living, or perhaps
No Curriculum at All?
Since the formation of the coalition there has been renewed focus on traditional subjects and disciplinary knowledge. Some have sought to challenge this. Academic Stephen Ball has memorably described it as a ‘curriculum of the dead’. Similarly Dr Mary Bousted, General Secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, claims that the coalition’s approach to primary education would “lead to a uniform education, with next to no opportunity for teachers to excite children and adapt learning to suit their pupils in their local area”.
So are we seeing the establishment of a ‘curriculum of the dead’ that will have a deadening impact on the work of teachers and their pupils? Or are we witnessing the restoration of a curriculum that is rightfully based on the principle of access to powerful knowledge? And to what extent can we even be sure that there will in the future be a meaningful National Curriculum, given that Academies and Free Schools are only required to teach maths, English and science, and to make provision for religious education? And how might new teachers, who are no longer required to complete teacher training and to have Qualified Teacher Status, be prepared for work in this uncertain curriculum context?
Closing keynote presentation by
(group director of Assessment Research and Development,
with Professor Richard Pring
(University of Oxford) responding