Black history in Scotland’s curriculum

Date: 22nd July 2020
Category: Civil Rights and Freedoms, Education, Leisure and Cultural Activities


Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP has responded to numerous asks that more is done to ensure social inequality, racism and Black history are covered in the education curriculum.

John Swinney’s response recognises what is taught in schools is crucially important to ensure children and young people have a strong knowledge of Scotland’s past, so they understand the importance of tolerance and anti-racism in Scotland’s present.

He stated that the current curriculum already provides opportunities for young people to learn about aspects of history, heritage and culture of Scotland, including the role that Scotland played in the slave trade and that Scottish Government must ensure teachers and learners have the skills and resources necessary to support and deliver this learning.

He noted that Education Scotland is looking to develop further materials and professional learning, to support investigations into Scotland’s Black history and to teach about Black heritage and culture as well as the slave trade and Scotland’s role in it.

To ensure the right progress is made, John Swinney said he will meet with stakeholders to identify what further steps can be taken to ensure wider social and systematic improvements are made to ensure equality for all in Scotland.

Together welcomes John Swinney’s statement, as supporting children’s right to be free from discrimination under Article 2 UNCRC. Discrimination based upon race, sex, religion, abilities or any other status can impact a child’s development and full realisation of their human rights.

  • Read the statement in full here.