Blackledge A (1998) The institutionalisation of inequality: The initial teacher training national curriculum for primary English as cultural hegemony. Educational Review, 50, pp. 55-64. https://doi.org/10.1080/0013191980500106
In June 1997 the Teacher Training Agency released the Initial Teacher Training National Curriculum for Primary English, alongside the ITT national Curriculum for Mathematics, the Standards for the Award of Qualified Teacher Status and the Revised Requirements for All Courses of Initial Teacher Training These requirements come to force from 1 September 1998. The orders fail to recognise the needs of students who will be the teachers of the twenty first‐century in British schools. In particular, the ITT National Curriculum for Primary English presents a model of literacy which assumes that all children have the same access to academic structures in schools; it ignores the fact that teachers need a sound understanding of the social process of literacy if they are to be effective in teaching minority culture children to achieve the same levels of attainment as their dominant culture peers. The orders are largely appropriate for those who will teach only children who already have access to structures of power and academic success based on the environment of their home culture, but they fail to address the implications of a culturally neutral curriculum for minority culture learners. This paper argues that in failing to make statutory any requirement for Initial Teacher Training providers to develop students’ understanding of the roles of culture, power and identity in the process of becoming literate, the new orders exacerbate and institutionalise inequality.
Educational Review: Volume 50