DfE will consult the public on Natural History education

Last Thursday there was a response to a written question that was sent to the Department for Education. The MP who asked the question was Caroline Lucas who is in the Green Party and is the MP for Brighton Pavilion where I live. The Minister who responded to the question was Nick Gibb who is the MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton who is a few miles along the coast. The response indicated that apparently the public will be consulted next year on the Natural History theme. Here is the question and answer

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what progress he has made on (a) plans to develop a GCSE in Natural History and (b) that GCSE being taught in schools from 2025.

The Department plans to introduce a GCSE in Natural History, provided that it meets the requirements that apply to all GCSEs. Officials are currently working with the four exam boards, Ofqual, and two independent advisors, to deliver the new Natural History GCSE subject content. The Department intends to consult publicly on the draft subject content in 2023, and for first teaching to be available in schools from September 2025.

As it happened, there have also been some other comments raised on the theme of the Natural History. A week earlier a Conservative MP Matthew Offord who is from Hendon asked this question and the answer began with the first paragraph shown here:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will make an assessment of the adequacy of the (a) curriculum and (b) teaching aids available to schools in helping to inform young people about the Government’s net-zero target.

The Department’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy sets out new initiatives which include support for teaching about nature and climate change, the introduction of a Natural History GCSE, a National Education Nature Park, and the Climate Leaders Award. It also supports head teachers to take a whole school approach to climate change and help achieve net zero……

A couple of weeks earlier a Labour MP Paul Blomfield from Sheffield Central asked a question and the response ,came from Trudy Harrison who is a DeFRA Minister included the words “Introducing a new Natural History GCSE.” His question was as follows and the first few words were interesting but it was a long response so the Natural History element did not come for some time.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made for the implications of her policies of the proposals outlined in the British Mountaineering Council’s open letter entitled the Outdoors for All.

The Government agrees with the three proposals set out in British Mountaineering Council’s open letter specifically that there should be fair access to the outdoors for everyone, better opportunities for young people to access the outdoors, and that we should invest in the health and well-being benefits of spending time in nature. We are working across departments developing a number of policies to open up access; for example, through active travel, nature-rich school grounds, more urban parks and green social prescribing.

So it will be very interesting for us if we are going to be requested by the Government on Natural History!

About ianchisnall

I am passionate about the need for public policies to be made accessible to everyone, especially those who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am particularly interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as health services and strategic planning.
This entry was posted in Brighton & Hove, Education, Environment, Parliament and Democracy, Youth Issues and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s