Letter: National Science Week: was it empty rhetoric or a cause for celebration?

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The Independent Online
Sir: I, too, would be thrilled if efforts such as National Science Week served to inspire and entertain thousands of people across the country (Letters, 25 March). I would, however, be even more thrilled if children were allowed to discover the potential of science in the classroom, and allowed free choice as to whether they wished to pursue science at GCSE level and beyond.

Such is the obsession of this government to produce scientists, all state schoolchildren must take both science and further science at GCSE, irrespective of ability and choice. This not only limits their options but also forces children with obvious ability in arts subjects to pursue studies that will have absolutely no value in their further education. Furthermore, if lower grades are achieved by such students, because of an innate hostility to science, it must seriously affect their prospects when applying for places in further education.

The science taught in schools is a mixture of the three core subjects biology, chemistry and physics. It would appear logical to combine them, but doing so is both a disservice to science students who would benefit from more depth in each subject, and to arts students who might have an aptitude for one of these subjects, but are forced to take all three.

Yours sincerely,

MARY M. GLAZIER

Broughton, Clwyd

25 March

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