Perhaps the most disturbing finding of the HA’s report is that while ‘over 90 per cent of independent and grammar schools represented teach history as an entirely separate subject . . . only 72.3 per cent of the comprehensives and 59.1 of the academies that responded do so. ’
As for why this has happened, the report points to the Government’s obsession with league tables:
‘Students have been deliberately denied an opportunity to study history by forcing them down vocational or academic pathways. GCSE students have also been taken off courses against their wishes to do BTEC (Business and Technology Education Council) qualifications in six months so that the school can boost its position in the league tables. This has happened to students who were otherwise on target for a C/B in History but who were doing badly on their other subject.Given the choice, it seems that pupils across a wide range of abilities have a passion for History. It is a tragedy that so many are denied access to an understanding of the past.