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Curriculum and democracy: implication of the linkage on today's basic education curriculum.

Ocheng, Mary, T.K.

The first common ground between curriculum and politics is that they are both concerned about the shape of society, and this is an ideological concern. Both curriculum and politics derive theories behind them from some point, often referred to as ideology. Every curriculum making process or political theory must adhere to the rules of procedure dictated by respective underlying ideologies. Discovery of the link between politics and curriculum is recent through the works of John Dewey (1899), and suggest far reaching implications in the curriculum making process. A school curriculum, is not, as it came out of the discovery of the link, static but dynamic. If a curriculum remains static in a dynamic society, especially in periods of rapid social change, it is likely that education which is meant to induce the young into society, to promote an intelligent understanding of it, will cater only for the needs and values which no longer exist. Since Uganda is investing in Universal Primary Education in order to bring about economic development, the choice of the type of curriculum is the individual development curriculum. It was found that several recommendations had been made before to adopt an individual development curriculum in Uganda schools, but was deliberately ignored during the colonial education (1925-1961), was introduced in 1962, but was abandoned due to lack of commitment by teachers in the field, who had not been trained on the new curriculum. As UPE was introduced in 1997 in Uganda, some instruments of individual development curriculum were introduced at the same time. This did not gain much ground as teachers in the field were not trained. The result was that out of the cohort of pupils who enrolled for PI in 1997, less than 25% completed the cycle in 2003, of which, less than a half had mastered reading and writing. In response to this learning outcome, a new curriculum, known as the thematic curriculum is to be introduced in 2006. This is in fact a learner-centred curriculum. This paper tries to highlight past experiences to learn from.

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Document Title: Curriculum and democracy: implication of the linkage on today's basic education curriculum.
Journal: Nkumba University Education Journal
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
No. of Pages: 60 - 79

Document Type:Journal Article (Peer Reviewed)
Subject Area:Contributory Studies and Research Approaches
Keywords:Curriculum, Democracy, Uganda, Curriculum Development, Curriculum Reform, Curriculum Design, Curriculum Changes

File Size:96 KB
Rights:Permission granted by author and publisher
Date Added:12 May 2008

Ocheng, Mary, T.K. (2006). Curriculum and democracy: implication of the linkage on today's basic education curriculum. Nkumba University Education Journal vol.1(1) pp.60-79