Teaching of British history to improve, education secretary says

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Changes to the national curriculum will help give pupils a "proper knowledge" of British history and enable them to take pride in the nation's achievements, Education Secretary Michael Gove has said.

At his departmental question session on 22 April 2013, Mr Gove said schoolchildren would learn more about the "heroes and heroines" of British history.

There was "enthusiasm" among both parents and students "for a deeper immersion in British history", he said.

"It's sadly the case that there are an insufficient number of students who leave school with a proper knowledge of Britain's past.

"I want them to know about the achievements of heroes and heroines so they can take pride in what these islands have achieved."

Labour MP Bill Esterson argued that the proposals were not broad enough and warned that A-level history could become less popular as a result.

Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell urged the education secretary to ensure pupils were taught the history of the Commonwealth, the former British Empire and the British territories.

Mr Gove replied: "He, on the eve of St George's Day, makes a very good point and it is the case that the new draft national history curriculum explains how Britain has interacted with the rest of the world."

Other topics included basic literacy and mathematic levels of pupils leaving school, underperforming teachers, and the availability of primary school places.

Our apologies for the disruption to the video in the middle of this clip. This was due to a power failure affecting both the Houses of Parliament and the BBC's offices in Millbank.

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