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30 April, 2015

PSHE will join citizenship as a statutory curriculum subject under the Lib Dems, says David Laws

The Liberal Democrats will make PSHE a statutory subject on the national curriculum and will not merge it with the existing subject of citizenship, education spokesman David Laws said yesterday.

If the Liberal Democrats get back into government next week and take control of their coveted Department for Education, citizenship and PSHE will form part of the 'slimmed down core national curriculum’ promised in their manifesto.

Mr Laws confirmed these commitments during his live webchat with the Telegraph yesterday.

His assurance not to merge the two subjects will be a relief to people who were alarmed by his manifesto's reference to citizenship.

In their manifesto, the Liberal Democrats appear to bundle citizenship - currently a statutory subject in its own right - into PSHE, which is currently non-statutory:

‘A slimmed down core national curriculum … will include Personal, Social and Health Education: a ‘curriculum for life’ including financial literacy, first aid and emergency lifesaving skills, citizenship, and age-appropriate sex and relationship education’.

But yesterday's comments suggest the Liberal Democrats want to make the national curriculum even stronger on nurturing healthy citizens, by requiring schools to teach both citizenship and PSHE as statutory subjects.

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