Education in schools: a consultative document (1977)

Education in schools (text)

Education in Schools: A Consultative Document

Presented to Parliament by the Secretary of State for Education and Science and the Secretary of State for Wales by Command of Her Majesty, July 1977

London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office 1977
Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen's Printer for Scotland.

Background notes

This was the green paper which began the process of curriculum review called for by Prime Minister Jim Callaghan in his Ruskin College speech of 18 October 1976.

It offered the following list of aims for schools (pages 6-7):

  • to help children develop lively, enquiring minds; giving them the ability to question and to argue rationally, and to apply themselves to tasks;
  • to instil respect for moral values, for other people and for oneself, and tolerance of other races, religions, and ways of life;
  • to help children understand the world in which we live, and the interdependence of nations;
  • to help children to use language effectively and imaginatively in reading, writing and speaking;
  • to help children to appreciate how the nation earns and maintains its standard of living and properly to esteem the essential role of industry and commerce in this process;
  • to provide a basis of mathematical, scientific and technical knowledge, enabling boys and girls to learn the essential skills needed in a fast-changing world of work;
  • to teach children about human achievement and aspirations in the arts and sciences, in religion, and in the search for a more just social order; and
  • to encourage and foster the development of the children whose social or environmental disadvantages cripple their capacity to learn, if necessary by making additional resources available to them.
It concluded that 'the challenge now is to restore the rigour without damaging the real benefits of the child-centred developments' (page 8).

The above notes were prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 21 June 2009.