Less Popular Subjects At Risk of Disappearing

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A union leader has warned that less popular subjects could “largely disappear” from the state education system as cost pressures make it difficult to sustain them.

Such subjects may become the “preserve” of those who can afford private schools and clubs, warns Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL).

 

The comments come the day before GCSE students get their exam results on Thursday.

 

Barton said that while he did not want to be “alarmist”, the financial pressures facing schools meant that some small-entry subjects were at risk.

 

“What we don’t want to see happen is for those subjects which are slightly less popular but have an important role to play in a well-rounded curriculum to largely disappear from state schools because they become the preserve of those who can afford to pay for them in private schools and clubs,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

 

“I think that would be bad for social cohesion in our society.”

 

Barton said that while he did not want to be “alarmist”, the financial pressures facing schools meant that some small-entry subjects were at risk.

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“What we don’t want to see happen is for those subjects which are slightly less popular but have an important role to play in a well-rounded curriculum to largely disappear from state schools because they become the preserve of those who can afford to pay for them in private schools and clubs,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

 

He added that the government needed to provide more funding for schools if it wanted them to continue offering a broad range of subjects.

 

“The simple truth is that if we want to maintain a broad curriculum in our state schools, we need to invest properly in them,” he said.

 

“And at the moment, there are real problems with school funding.”

 

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