Ruairi Quinn: History has a very bright future in our Junior Cert classrooms
THE historian Diarmaid Ferriter recently penned an opinion piece for the Irish Independent appealing to me not to bring about "the end of history" as we reform the Junior Cycle. I can assure him that the plans I have for the radical overhaul of the first three years of post-primary schooling will not see the end of this important subject.
Contrary to popular belief, history is not a compulsory Junior Cycle subject in all post-primary schools. Last year, 5,000 students did not take the subject in their Junior Certificate exams. However, history will be embedded into the very heart of the curriculum for all students under the new Framework for Junior Cycle which I announced late last year.
I believe students will no longer miss out on the chance to build on their study of history in primary school, to develop the critical and analytical skills of the historian. They will, as Prof Ferriter suggests, discover that history can take you anywhere.