The Education Secretary, The Rt. Hon. Damian Hinds MP, has revealed plans to expect schools to deliver much more than an academic, exam driven curriculum. 

During his speech to the Church of England Foundation for Educational Leadership conference, he outlined the following five areas of focus:

  • First, there’s SPORT – traditional, competitive team sports and a wide range of other physical activities.
  • Next CREATIVITY – which features all kinds of thoughtful and inventive activities, as well as traditional creative ones such as: art, design, creative writing and composing music;
  • Third is PERFORMING – which emphasises more expressive activities for individuals or in a group including: drama, theatre, dance, playing in an orchestra or singing in a choir, public speaking and debating;
  • The fourth category is VOLUNTEERING & MEMBERSHIP - through voluntary youth groups, campaigns of particular interest to the young, or school-based initiatives, as well as structured programmes like Duke of Edinburgh, or uniformed groups like the Cadets, Scouts and Guides. It also includes voluntary work, which dovetails to our final category….
  • Which is WORLD OF WORK – from learning about careers and entrepreneurialism, to actual work experience or a Saturday job.

Together these will be known as the 5 Foundations For Character.

Mr Hinds explained, “I am delighted that the new Ofsted Framework is going to place clear importance on personal development and positive attitudes.

“Inspectors will evaluate the extent to which schools support pupils to develop their character – including their resilience, confidence and independence – and help them know how to keep physically and mentally healthy.

“A separate behaviour judgement will assess whether schools are creating a calm, well-managed environment free from bullying.

“This emphasises, lest there be any doubt, that clearly schools aren’t just about qualifications. We need greater co-ordination to increase awareness of all these opportunities available.”

Damian Hinds, 7th February, 2019.

Over the coming week, we will explore how Northern House is ensuring that our pupils have opportunities to enrich their learning through our extensive wider curriculum provision, how we are already laying these foundations.