All About Curriculum

Before reading the article I was under the understanding that school curriculum was developed by the Ministry of Education who chose professionals from all over the Education field (Teachers, Administrators, University Professors, etc.) to develop the curriculum in their area of study/strength.

After doing the reading- I answered the questions provided.

How is citizenship education a curricular problem?

It is felt by many people that because schools play such an important role in the lives of students, that it is education’s role and responsibility to develop and graduate “good” citizens.  Graduates with not only an understanding of their country’s governance, but also citizens who are productive and law abiding members of society.  Where should these teachings be included?  Social Science courses or throughout all curricula.

How are school curricula developed and implemented?

The government is involved with the Education sector usually having someone designated for this role.  Other areas of government that may be involved are an elected minister, local school authorities, school councils or governing bodies involving parents and others. This is dependent upon the National Government and to what degree these people have in curriculum politics. Schools also have some influence even if it is only through their choice as to which course and programs they offer. The main groups involved in curriculum reviews are teachers, principals, senior administrators and elected local authorities (if they exist). Subject matter experts from schools and universities typically play a central role in the curriculum formation, review process and potential public debates. Post-secondary institutions can also influence curriculum but this influence can be restrained by tertiary institutions. Curriculum can also be influenced by other policies (ie. student assessment).

What new information/perspectives does this reading provide about the development and implementation of school curriculum?

  • Parties involved in developing the curriculum may not always see eye-to-eye making the process lengthy and complicated.
  • Researchers can provide proven facts but this does not mean the end result will be a correct policy choice if it is not what people believe, want or will accept.

Is there anything that surprises you or maybe that concerns you?

I did not realize the amount of “politics” surrounding curriculum decisions and development.  This is concerning to me as Education and the updating of curriculum may take a backseat to other issues that are felt to be more pressing or decisions may be made in haste with limited or incorrect information.  In addition, government decisions are driven by voters and therefore decisions may be made in order to get reelected that are not in the best interests of students and their education.

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