Thursday, 14 July 2011
Modern Baccalaureate - an interesting development
Andrew Chubb explaining the ModBac
The Modern Baccalaureate was explained in detail during a conference in Leeds yesterday. Led by Andrew Chubb, Principal of Archbishop Sentamu Academy in Hull, the aspirational nature of the ModBac was explained to an audience of colleagues from a number of Academies around the country.
The ModBac was created as a response to the UK's English Baccalaureate launched by the Rt Hon Michael Gove, the UK's Secretary of State for Education. Many schools and educational professionals have viewed this as just being a rather arbitrary measure and just another hoop that schools have to jump through, without necessarily being the best thing for at least some students in this, the Third Millennium. There are already horror stories of schools changing students options, creating crash courses in new subjects during holidays simply to tick the EBac box. I
The ModBac provides an aspirational curriculum with a series of thresholds, which, at the highest levels, extremely challenging for even the brightest students. It does feature additional modules personal and creative challenge as well as a series of core components, including, very sensibly, one of personal finance management. There is considerable detail about this on the Modern Baccalaureate website.
There is considerable interest in the curriculum, how it will further develop and how it will be received 'higher up'. But it does not have to be an 'either/or' situation. Students are able to comply with the requirements of the EBac and tick that box, but within the framework of a much more aspirational, personalised and appropriate curriculum. It does seem to make sense to me, even if some of these latter phrases are now deemed irrelevant.