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Director’s Blog December 2023

Dear SHP family 

As the Autumn term draws to a close and we look forward to a new year, I wanted to share with you all the latest news from the Schools History Project. Many of you will hopefully have seen the survey that we sent out a few months ago asking for some reflections on SHP and suggestions for ways to move forward. The response was magnificent, with over 170 teachers and history educators sharing their insight and wisdom. There is a lot of love out there for the Schools History Project! In the spirit of my  former tutor at Sussex University, Willie Lamont, who loved a good gobbet, I have selected a few choice examples that I think sum up all that is best about SHP:  

  • Feeling part of a community of educators with shared values and commitment to enabling young people to be inspired, challenged and excited by history; being challenged myself by fresh thinking that has made me change my practice again and again; opening up space for the stories not told, the experiences unrecognised and the histories excluded. In truth, SHP conferences transformed my teaching again and again and I dread to think what I would have done without it.” 
  • “SHP embraces and explores new perspectives in history, at the same time as offering structure within which we can teach rigorous, challenging, knowledge-rich courses through a clear disciplinary lens” 

There were also some important areas for SHP to consider, namely the visibility and recognition of the fantastic work that our Regional Advisors are doing, and strengthening our connection with the regions; ways in which we can grow our partnership with OCR and support the OCR SHP GCSE course; widening our community to make it more inclusive and welcoming; and extending our support for the primary sector. Our Fellows, Honorary Fellows and Regional Advisors will continue to do a wonderful job in driving forward these changes. And on that note, I am delighted to welcome Katie Hall as a new Honorary Fellow of the Schools History Project.  

We have a few forthcoming events to look forward to in the new year. The SHP New Teachers’s Conference will be taking place, virtually, on Saturday February 3rd 2024, for trainees, ECTs, years 3-5 History teachers from primary and secondary schools as well as History teacher trainers. There will be 5 workshops for secondary teachers and 3 workshops for primary teachers all led by experienced practitioners (full details and booking link here Conferences – Schools History Project) and the keynote lecture will be given by Corinne Fowler, professor of Colonialism and Heritage at the University of Leicester. If you haven’t bought a ticket yet, the Early Bird offer (£40) runs out on New Year’s Eve! And please spread the word far and wide to make this a really successful event.  

Other events to make a note of in your diary, include our SHP Understanding: Teaching LGBTQ+ histories in schools event at the British Library (9 March 2024) and our annual Summer conference at Leeds Trinity University (28-30 June 2024). More details to follow in my next Director’s blog. 

Alex and the SHP Curriculum PATHS committee have also been working hard on writing its constitution, building on its core aims, including:  

  • Recognise and draw on the excellent curriculum-level work already being done by history educators in their school contexts.  
  • Empower teachers by developing a framework of Ethical Principles for ethical curriculum design, to support the framing of curricular rationales, and guiding curriculum design and development at a departmental level.  
  • Provide multiple examples of curriculum models, rooted in Curriculum PATHS principles, which could be adapted for specific contexts.  

I am really excited about the potential for SHP Curriculum PATHS to deliver some really inspiring work over the next few years and will continue to update you with this pioneering work.  

If you have any questions or comments about anything related to SHP then please email me at  

Have a fabulous festive season! 

Dan Lyndon-Cohen 

Director of the Schools History Project