The DailyMail.com, a British on-line news website, has recently cited key findings from a research study contributed by Prof. Richard Harris (Professor of History Education, University of Reading) in an article, titled “Now 83% of schools have made their history lessons woke: Huge number of secondary schools have changed teaching to focus more on diversity, study shows”.
The article highlighted that a huge number of English secondary schools are now focusing on diversity lessons as part of their History curriculum, and changes in the curriculum mainly relate to black and Asian British history, women, the disabled, the working classes and LGBTQ+ issues. Although the newspaper article criticised the move towards teaching a more diverse curriculum, the developments reflect a genuine desire within the history education community to give young people a broader sense of the past and a sense of its complexity.
These findings are drawn from the report, titled ‘Historical Association Secondary Survey 2021’, which is an annual survey report on the state of History teaching in English (and, for the first time this year, included Scottish secondary schools). For the 2021 report, the survey data were collected from 316 History teachers across 214 state-funded secondary schools in England. Like in the previous years, Prof. Harris co-authored the annual report.