Poor UK education standards

#1
I give tours to young soldiers around the military museum in which I work and am amazed at how poor their grasp of British history is.

Last week I gave a tour to twenty seven SATT's, of that number only three had ever heard of Field Marshal Montgomery and only one of the Battle of El Alamein. Only two knew we had fought the Japanese during the Second World War. The only one who knew of Arnhem saw it on a film.

Several thought that British involvement in WWII ended with the Battle of Britain and after the Americans joined the War they did all the fighting.

They thought we simply went into our Anderson shelters or the London Underground, ate rations and listened to Vera Lyn whilst the Americans sent a Band of Brothers to Save Private Ryan.

What on earth are they teaching at school?

Cardinal
 
#3
It does make you think, especially when coupled with the fact that business' have to provide a remedial level of education to their school leaver employees.
I am also not convinced the new teachers in their late 20's/early 30's know a great deal either. I know one and I am always telling her things she does not know but should!
 
#4
I give tours to young soldiers around the miitary museum in which I work and am amazed at how poor their grasp of British history is.

Last wek I gave a tour to twenty seven SATT's, of that number only three had ever heard of Field Marshal Montgomery and only one of the Battle of El Alamein. Only two knew we had fought the Japanese during the Second World War. The only one who knew of Arnhem saw it on a film.

Several thought that British involvement in WWII ended with the Battle of Britain and after the Americans joined the War they did all the fighting.

They thought we simply went into our Anderson shelters or the London Underground, ate rations and listened to Vera Lyn whilst the Americans sent a Band of Brothers to Save Private Ryan.

What on earth are they teaching at school?

Cardinal
Not English, obviously. ;-)
 
#5
Groan......! Not like in our day blah blah blah! Without googling name me 3 Battles of the English Civil war? Shaped our history no end but how often is mentioned?
 
#6
It's the same in all fields I'm afraid. Every now and then I go into schools to give science lectures, it's always worrying when you have year 9s not knowing what the Sun is, being amazed that them funny sparkly things in the sky are stars, having pictures on the wall in science classes of the Earth in the middle of the Solar System.......
 
#7
Groan......! Not like in our day blah blah blah! Without googling name me 3 Battles of the English Civil war? Shaped our history no end but how often is mentioned?
And of course the old saying of "those who forget their history are destined to repeat the same mistakes" Has been forgotten!
The problem with schools is they are now run by the left wing politicos who seem to be ignoring the facts and replacing them with lessons on how to be nice to each other, and how evil our forefathers were waging war and ruin on other nice friendly countries in Europe. We started the war you know by not letting Germany have it's holiday camps all over Europe ;-)
 
U

uncle_ho

Guest
#8
Groan......! Not like in our day blah blah blah! Without googling name me 3 Battles of the English Civil war? Shaped our history no end but how often is mentioned?
Without googling I give you:
Naseby
Edgeworth
Freedom Field,Plymouth.

I will google now to check
 
#11
Isn't it a bit of a cop out to blame the education system?

Parents also need to take an active involvement. My interest in military history was sparked by my father and I learnt a great deal more from reading/doing my own research rather than just taking in what they covered at school.

That said, the syllabus when I was at school did cover most of what you mentioned. Today I believe it touches more on the blitz and the evacuation.

Q

Mental note to self - must buy World at War series for when kids are older.
 
S

stabradop

Guest
#12
Also it helps if the history taught today shows some relevance to the current situation. The Iron Curtain was still up when I started secondary school, and went down while I was still there, so WW1/WW2 was very relevant. Anyone under 23 wasn't even born when the Berlin Wall came down so events since WW2 are more relevant to the world today so anything before 1945 needn't be touched on in such great detail.

I know that as far as WW2 goes it tends to focus on what made it start, the early stages of the war, the Blitz etc, the Holocaust and the aftermath of the war. The difference being that it tends to be one or two short modules in history rather than a term and a half's work as we did "back in my day".

I must add at this point that if I was ever going to do a degree it would be in history as that was by far my favourite subject at school.
 
#15
As a massive history saddo I'm always amazed by just how little otherwise very bright people know about history but it was my GCSE Maths teacher telling our class that the average grade for the subject was an E that really shocked me not sure if its improved in the ten years since then.
 

dizzy.chick

Clanker
Book Reviewer
#16
We spent very little time on the WW's in GCSE or A-level. We spent a lot of time learning about the 1920s depression and dodgy banks?! hmmm

Most of the history I have learnt about has come from personal research. Schools can only cover so much of a LOT of history, I remember writing essays on the British witch trials, Soviet Russia, the role of the trade unions in the interwar years, the 1906 peoples budget etc. Covering a fair few different topics but still not everything.

I love history but decided not to study it at uni as I liked it too much as an interest. Having to write essays on a subject can really take the fun out of it!
 
#18
I don't think you can blame schools as such, they don't set the curriculum, and even if they did subjects like history are SO dependent on the type of teacher you get. Dry, dusty topics can't be brought to life by teachers who are as bored with the subject as the kids are. I fired my kids interests in history by buying them the Horrible Histories books...they're a brilliant read for young children, but presented in a really interesting format, so that when they get further along and are told "Right we're doing the Wars of the Roses next term" they already remember something that made them laugh or go "eeeuww"! Added to which, they're quite a laugh as a growed-up too :D
 
#19
I cant really say the topics we learn at school are bad. (with the exeption of Shakespear, id rather skewer one of my testicals) However the standard of schools, or atleast mine, are so underfunded. With the recent cuts my school is no longer photocopying, we cant get any text books, we cant have booklets about the work or anything. They even put a strict limit on printing which is so retarded.
 
#20
I cant really say the topics we learn at school are bad. (with the exeption of Shakespear, id rather skewer one of my testicals) However the standard of schools, or atleast mine, are so underfunded. With the recent cuts my school is no longer photocopying, we cant get any text books, we cant have booklets about the work or anything. They even put a strict limit on printing which is so retarded.
But not as retarded as your speeelung obviously eh?
 

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