David Blunkett: Removing citizenship classes from National Curriculum 'absurd'
DJ Reggie Yates and MP David Blunkett might not have much in common – but they agree that removing Citizenship from the national curriculum would be a bad move.
Yesterday (14 December), former Home Secretary Mr Blunkett told David Cameron at Prime Minister’s Questions:
“It would be perverse, in fact it would be absurd, to be requiring those coming from abroad to settle in Britain to learn about our democracy, to take citizenship courses, whilst withdrawing the teaching of citizenship and democracy to our own Children's rights in our own schools.”
Isobel Mitchell, Head of Education and Students at Amnesty said she was delighted that a senior politician had spoken up for retaining the subject.
“In order for young people to understand their role in the Big Society, it’s vital they understand their human rights and their responsibilities – both part of Citizenship education.
“The riots earlier this year suggested that young people are feeling disenfranchised – so why take away the subject that can prevent that? We need to talk about these things – and if Citizenship is removed, we’ll have to wait until the riots enter the history curriculum in 20 years’ time.”
In September this year, Amnesty backed a massive, ongoing campaign to keep Citizenship in the curriculum launched by DJ Reggie Yates and young campaigner Danny Bartlett.
Amnesty International UK is a founding member of Democratic Life, a coalition of organisations calling on politicians from all parties to support citizenship education so that it remains in the national curriculum and schools continue to improve the teaching of the subject. Show your support by joining the Democratic Life campaign (http://www.democraticlife.org.uk/take-action/petition/)