National Curriculum: Mathematics

The National Curriculum for Mathematics was introduced into England, Wales and Northern Ireland as a nationwide curriculum for primary and secondary state schools following the Education Reform Act 1988. The basis of the curriculum and its associated testing was to standardise the content taught across schools in order to raise standards of attainment in mathematics. The National Curriculum (NC) went hand-in-hand with the development of national tests (SATs) at the end of the Key Stages. The NC introduced Programmes of Study (PoS), Attainment Targets (AT) levels and Statements of Attainment (SoA).

Following the Cockcroft committee recommendations ([i]Mathematics Counts[/i]), Using and Applying Mathematics was a significant inclusion in the curriculum through ATs 1 and 9 which included using mathematics in practical tasks, in real life problems and to investigating within mathematics itself.

The National Curriculum required all schools to address the issue of teaching solely for the acquisition of knowledge and skills in isolation from the application of mathematics, and to develop a teaching and learning approach in which the uses and applications of mathematics permeate and influence all work in mathematics. This was a major undertaking for schools, and perhaps the single most significant challenge for the teaching of mathematics required by the National Curriculum in its aim of raising standards for all students.

The National Curriculum required students to develop a range of methods for calculating - from mental methods through to the use of electronic calculators. In order to progress through the levels, students at every stage were to be encouraged to develop their own methods for doing calculations, a feature which was developed further through the Numeracy project and the [i]Framework for Teaching Mathematics[/i].

Although [i]Mathematics in the National Curriculum[/i] underwent a number of revisions, the mathematical content changed very little and kept assessment as a major constituent. To enable teachers to make sense of the new curriculum, non-statutory guidance and training materials were published to go alongside training for all teachers.

Resources

Mathematics in the National Curriculum 1995

In 1993 Sir Ron Dearing, Chairman of the School Curriculum and Assessment Authority (SCAA), reviewed the whole national curriculum and made recommendations on slimming down the curriculum, and improving its administration. The revised curriculum which was implemented from August 1995 was not to be altered for five...
Publication date:
1990 - 1999

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Mathematics in the National Curriculum 1991

The 1989 document was replaced by a revised version, Mathematics in the National Curriculum (1991). A major aim of the revision was to make assessment more manageable, whilst keeping the content of mathematics unchanged. The revisions came into force on 1 August 1992. The 14 Attainment Targets (ATs) were reduced to...
Publication date:
1990 - 1999

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Mathematics in the National Curriculum 1989

The National Curriculum for Mathematics was introduced into England, Wales and Northern Ireland as a nationwide curriculum for primary and secondary state schools following the Education Reform Act 1988. The purpose of the National Curriculum was to standardise the content taught across schools in order to raise...
Publication date:
1980 - 1989

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Mathematics in the National Curriculum 1999

Although the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) carried out a radical overhaul of the curriculum, the mathematical content hardly changed. Key Stages One, Two and Three had their own Programmes of Study (PoS). Key Stage Four was now divided into Foundation and Higher. The PoS set out what students should be...
Publication date:
1990 - 1999

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Subject(s)Mathematics
Tagsn.a
Age5-7, 7-11, 11-14, 14-16
Published1990 - 1999
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URLhttps://www.stem.org.uk/cx564
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