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Gove: Give Bac choice to children

Through the introduction of the E-Bac, Michael Gove has dramatically altered our children’s education.

By leaving out subjects like RE, Music, Art, Drama ICT, Business Studies and Design Technology from the new performance measure, creativity and diversity in the curriculum are being eroded, and children in many schools are being dissuaded from taking these subjects up to GCSE level. Instead, they are being strongly persuaded to take those subjects that will help schools to “look good” in the new E-Bac “league tables”. Consequently, the richness of our children’s education is now in danger of being severely compromised.

Following the work of the “Better Bac” coalition, (http://abetterbaccalaureate.org), Archbishop Sentamu Academy believes that any overarching qualification should be inclusive, aspirational and personalised. It should also prepare our children for further study and the workplace, fully equipped to take their place in society.

We have therefore launched “The Modern Baccalaureate” as an alternative to Mr. Gove’s E-Bac. Full details can be found on our web-site:


We are now inviting schools to join us in refining and developing the award over the next 12 months (see website), pending general release for September 2012.

We would also like everyone who believes the E-Bac to be a flawed concept to join us in asking the government to pause, reflect, consult with the Profession, and support the development of a more modern baccalaureate – because our children deserve better.

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      • Simon GeorgeSimon George commented  · 

        If accepted, the government's proposals will affect my daughter negatively, so I hope this suggested alternative is considered seriously

      • claire claire commented  · 

        The Ebacc is simply is simply not a model for 21st century education.

      • JRJR commented  · 

        Creative industries are our main economic growth area, why are we discouraging children to develop a grounding in the subjects that teach them how to think creatively. Surely this is economic suicide?

      • Ros CRos C commented  · 

        Imagine the world be with art and design ..... what would you wear? What would you live in? Would you have furniture? Creativity surely is key to learning and independence so why doesn't the Ebacc recognise that?

      • AnonymousAnonymous commented  · 

        Surely business studies has a place in a 21st century workplace

      • Duncan InnesDuncan Innes commented  · 

        The Ebacc does nothing to meet the needs of a diverse groups of students, the needs of British Industry or help British universities. Students should have the opportunity to study a broad balance of subjects - where other skills than just just regurgitating facts are required!

      • SteveMSteveM commented  · 

        The Ebacc is ill-thought out and has been developed without any meaningful consultation. It is a poor relation to international equivalents.

      • AnonymousAnonymous commented  · 

        The Ebacc is like stepping back in time to a more segregated system where different learning styles and a flexible approach to developing skills are unlikely to be on the agenda.

      • Paul EastonPaul Easton commented  · 

        The provision of the Ebacc is too restrictive and dismisses broader education. It fails to acknowledge the hard work completed by learners and staff and does not encourage broad and balance curriculum.

      • Eileen hindsEileen hinds commented  · 

        This is surely the most sensible way to move forward for the 21st Century. Employers tell us they want these very skills and yet the Government seems to be moving in the opposite direction! It's young peoples' progress not league tables which count so this initiative has my vote.

      • Brian HBrian H commented  · 

        The evolution of the present day school curriculum has been no accident. Nor has it been driven by perverse incentives. It reflects many years of development to provide a curriculum that is relevant and motivating for young people, developing the skills to prepare them for the modern world - skills for learning, for employment, for life. These objectives should be at the heart of any Bac.

      • Mike WesterdaleMike Westerdale commented  · 

        The EBac serves effectively only a small proportion of the students we teach. A much wider accreditation is required with many fewer anomolies to truly empower and enable a generation of independent learners specialising in the ares of their choice in a range of qualifications suited to differet learning styles. The Modbac is a real opportunity not to make the mistakes of the past by trying to circumnavigate the spurious league tables.

      • Kath GKath G commented  · 

        It is vital that we keep a wide range of options available for young people - individual humans respond best when given choice, when motivated and when given the opportunity to produce work of which they are proud. What makes anyone think adolescents don't follow this pattern?

      • Rob DaviesRob Davies commented  · 

        An excellent and genuine alternative...

      • Dorene McCormackDorene McCormack commented  · 

        There are so many excellent and strong comments coming back against Gove's EBac. Those concerned now need to get this issued aired and
        force Gove to think again.
        This may be through 38 Degrees as a campaign but there is a need to
        get many more votes on this issue for this to happen.

      • CaronKerrCaronKerr commented  · 

        The EBacc is a narrow qualification which deepens the divide between those that have not and those that have. It is a return to selection and offers a narrow curriculum choice which can not fit the needs of all students. It is based on content rather than skills and does not provide the skills students need for the their future career paths whatever path that may be. At it's worse it will demotivate and isolate large numbers of young people who will feel "worthless" or not "good enough" as they witness their peers being groomed and selected to meet the EBacc requirements. To amend curriculum models or staffing needs in order to comply with the EBacc needs is in my opinion morally wrong and unethical.

      • Lucia ClarkLucia Clark commented  · 

        I am no longer debating the validity of EBacc but campaigning for RE to be part of Humanities subject. The effects of this exclusion have already been subject of discussions. It is incomprehensible in this post 11 September world i.e.growth of extremism and intolerance government is not taking the study of religion serious. Apparently Mr Gove recognises the importance of RE in schools but if keeps as it is there won't be quality RE lessons nor teachers in schools.

      • Paul HopkinsPaul Hopkins commented  · 

        Gove's idea of a curriculum are those things that he studied in the 1970s (though in fact it is more of a 1950's grammar school idea). This is not appropriate for the 2010's in the UK. Above everything else I thought the idea of choice was central to this new order's philosophy - so to parody Henry Ford, "You can study anything you like as long as it's the Ebac" - welcome to this brave new world it's forward to the past.

      • woodwormwoodworm commented  · 

        sadly my SMT has fallen in line with the E-bac, as aresult all the 'better performing' pupils have been discouraged from following their choice into GCSE D&T as the school has toldthem they are doing the E-Bac. The remaining pupils not deemed smart enoough are left with their choices, leaving D&T with a large proportion of all boys low ability groups who will achieve decent value, but without the spread of grades seen in previous years. it may be some time before we see any A grade pupils back in our faculty untill the wheels turn and the next new/old recycled plan returns them, if by that time there is a faculty for them to work in.

      • Paula WatersPaula Waters commented  · 

        The E-bac is probably the worst idea in educational terms for decades if not centuries. While I am all in favour of students having a broad education Gove's version of the baccalaureate is far more limiting than the International model. Where is the creativity of Art, Design, Music and Drama and the vital teaching of Technology and Business? Osbourne stated in his budget speech that Britian needs to get back to making things - how? when Design Technology, Art, Performing Arts and Vocational Subjects are made out to be second class.

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