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History – Whose History?

The new Education Secretary, Kit Malthouse, takes office at a daunting time. Not only did Covid take a heavy toll on children’s schooling, but the militancy of the Black Lives Matter movement left a problematic legacy for schools, with demands for a more inclusive curriculum, including from the government’s own Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities.

On Wednesday 19th October (12.30pm – 1.30pm),  Politeia will hold a lunchtime conference to consider the questions raised for the history curriculum and what government policy should be. Speakers will include:

  • Professor David Abulafia LittD FBA, Gonville and Caius College and Professor Emeritus of Mediterranean History, Cambridge
  • Dr Daniel Robinson, Magdalen College, Oxford
  • Professor Robert Tombs, St John’s College and Professor Emeritus of French History, Cambridge
  • Dr Sheila Lawlor, Founder and Research Director, Politeia – to introduce and chair     

Speakers will consider the design of the current curriculum, whether and how demands for greater ‘inclusivity’ can be met without politicising school history and such questions as:

  • What are the aims and obligations of the current history curriculum for British, European and global history? 
  • How does the law accommodate professional freedom, including the option of teaching inclusive courses?
  • Should the statutory obligation remain to teach the history of this country from the Stone Age and the Romans to the present day remain, with almost half the marks at GCSE be awarded for a knowledge and understanding of Britain’s history?
  • How should the law and official guidance ensure history teaching in schools is not politicised?

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