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The programme relates directly to the issues of innovation raised in the last section of the course. It uses the report on the Nuffield Primary French Experiment, called "Primary French in the... Balance", carried out by the National Foundation for Educational Research, as the basis for a discussion between Dr. Clare Burstall, "Deputy Director of the N.F.E.R., Professor Tony Becher, formerly Assistant Director of the Nuffield Foundation, Professor Sam Spicer, who was responsible for the preparation of the teaching materials, and William Prescott, chairman of the course team.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: E203, Curriculum design and development
Item code: E203; 13
First transmission date: 21-08-1976
Published: 1976
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:23:58
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Producer: David Seligman
Contributors: Clare Burstall; W. H. Prescott
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Curriculum innovation; National Foundation for Educational Research; Nuffield Foundation; Primary French
Footage description: The opening sequence shows British tourists crossing by ferry to France. In voice over Bill Prescott considers their ability to speak French. He interviews several tourists who attempt to read a French newspaper. Shots of Harold Macmillan, Harold Wilson and George Brown with French leaders. Film of Edward Heath making a speech in French. In voice over Prescott comments on the linguistic inadequacy of our leaders. In voice over Prescott speaks of the need to improve British teaching of modern languages. Extract from a mid-1960s French lesson at primary level. Prescott argues that the control of curriculum by head teachers, rather than any central body, has made the overhauling of modern language teaching very difficult. He refers to the attempt by the Nuffield Foundation to introduce change in this area. In the studio, Tony Becher, former Assistant Director of the Nuffield Foundation, explains how the Foundation became involved in curriculum development. Sam Spicer, formerly Head of the Nuffield French project team, explains the organisation of their scheme. Clare Burstall is Deputy Director of the National Foundation for Education Research, (N.F.E.R.), which carried out an independent evaluation of the Nuffield scheme. She outlines the major findings of her final report. Ebbw Vale was one of the areas selected for the Nuffield pilot scheme. Tom Jones, Assistant Director of Education in the county of Gwent, explains why they dropped French at primary level after the unfavourable N.F.E.R. report. Gwyn Cox, headmaster of a Gwent school, describes Ebbw Vale over film of the town. He explains why, in his view, French had to be dropped from the primary school curriculum. Pat Lord, who taught French at an Ebbw Vale primary school, explains over film of her taking a classs why she thought the project was worthwhile. Studio discussion between the four contributors on the difficulties of organising French lessons in primary schools that will tie in with the secondary school programme. The discussion moves on to consider the hostile reaction that greeted the N.F.E.R. report. They also point out the weaknesses in the evaluative methods used in compiling the report. Prescott concludes the programme by maintaining that primary French was successful in certain schools, an example of which is examined in E 203/15.
Master spool number: 6HT/72176
Production number: 00525_6123
Videofinder number: 3437
Available to public: no