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25 November, 2010

Government education Peer acknowledges the importance of citizenship in schools

Answering questions in the House of Lords yesterday, Lord Hill - the government's education spokesperson - acknowledged that citizenship education is 'an extremely important issue'.

Lord Beecham had inquired as to why there was no mention of citizenship in the Government's new education white paper:

'In view of the strong support voiced in all parts of your Lordships' House for the continued inclusion of citizenship education in the national curriculum, will the Minister say whether he is in favour of it and, if so, why the White Paper does not appear to mention it?'

The answer was encouraging. 'Citizenship,' Said Lord Hill of Oareford, 'is an extremely important issue and one that many noble Lords have raised ... I think that everyone accepts the importance of the subject.

'The review of the curriculum, which will be announced shortly, will look into these and other important issues,' he said.

His remarks may go some way to reassuring those who have been awaiting news of curriculum changes with some trepidation. Democratic Life, a coalition of organisations including Amnesty, British Youth Council and the Citizenship Foundation, has already been campaigning for citizenship in anticipation of moves to drop it from the curriculum. They have strong backing: supporters include The Co-operative, The Law Society, British Institute of Human Rights, English Secondary Students' Association and Media Trust.


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