Schools should keep teaching climate change on the National Curriculum.

 

John supports the teaching of climate change as part of the National Curriculum

John supports the continued teaching of Climate Change as part of the National Curriculum

 

 

This week I will write to Schools in my constituency urging them to continue the teaching of Climate Change to children. According to new draft guidelines from the Government for the teaching children at key stages 1-3 there is no mention of climate change under geography teaching and a single reference to how carbon dioxide produced by humans impacts on the Climate.

 

I understand that teachers will still be able to teach Climate Change despite the fact it is not included in the curriculum. This happens in Independent schools that do not have to teach the national curriculum. However, I am still concerned.

 

Without explicit mention of Climate Change I fear that it is irresponsible and dangerous for under 14s and pupils who do not study GCSE geography to be denied a science-based understanding of how Climate Change impacts on human beings in the UK and elsewhere. To leave its inclusion and exclusion up to the individual beliefs of teachers is wrong and would result in differing levels of education for different pupils.

 

Along with 22 other MPs I have signed Early Day Motion 1208 condemning the removal of climate change from the national curriculum. I agree with former Chief Scientific Adviser Professor Sir David King that the exclusion of such issues represents an abdication of our duty to future generations and urging Ministers to keep climate change in the national curriculum for key stages one to three.

 

And according to polling, some 92% of teachers agree with me.

 

I hope that the consultation on the draft national curriculum will result in the specific mention of Climate Change so  the teaching of it is underpinned in the curriculum but also because it will show a commitment by the government to educate future generations about one of the biggest challenges they will face.

 

I urge educators everywhere to keep teaching Climate Change!

 

2 responses to “Schools should keep teaching climate change on the National Curriculum.

  1. Generally I agree with this, but the argument is a little muddled in parts.

    To state “Without explicit mention of Climate Change I fear that it is irresponsible and dangerous for under 14s and pupils who do not study GCSE geography to be denied a science-based understanding of how Climate Change impacts on human beings in the UK and elsewhere.” implies that climate change is not present in the key stage 4 draft for science.

    Whilst I concede the exact words might not be present, the earth sciences section of Chemistry certainly covers the underling science needed for this process, and climate change itself is the overarching context. It is the responsibility of the teacher to use this context, not for the programme of study to demand it. Further, if the exam boards add climate change to their specifications, then teachers will definitely cover it.

    Also, it’s not just teachers in the independent sector who can cover content outside of the national curriculum, anyone can and everyone should. The NC is merely what must be covered.

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