Managing the Curriculum
Kenneth Baker is reputed to have said of the National Curriculum that it is an idea whose 'time has come'. We did, of course, have a National Curriculum before, though last time around it was known as the Revised Code. The worst effects came not so much from the centrally defined curriculum as from the standards of attainment, and the tests to establish whether those standards had been reached. There is a fascinating story to be told of how we appear to be going round in a kind of helix on this matter of who controls the school curriculum. The advent of the National Curriculum does not mean that the task of managing the curriculum has been removed from heads. Rather, the National Curriculum will impose certain mandatory parameters within which the curriculum will still have to be managed. The National Curriculum attainment targets will provide specific behavioural objectives.