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Law Society pushes for law to be part of school curriculum

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Children should know their rights, says president I. Stephanie Boyce

The president of the Law Society is pushing for law to be part of the school curriculum so that children “know their rights”.

Speaking during a diversity event held at Dechert last week, I. Stephanie Boyce said the campaign would also help “break down barriers” as pupils start to think about a career in law during their primary and secondary education.

“Pupils might think law is an elitist profession, that lawyers don’t sound or look like them, or that they don’t belong,” said Boyce. “If we start to teach law in schools from a young age then they are able to move through the education system and start to think about a career in law earlier.”

“Some schools do — but not all — and my campaign is for all schools,” reiterated Boyce. “It could make a difference to those who think the solicitor profession is not for them and starts to break down barriers for those individuals.”

Boyce referenced statistics showing that nearly two-thirds of people do not know their legal rights.

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The Society’s first black president, who began her tenure a year ago, has said previously it is her mission to leave the profession “more diverse and inclusive than the one I entered”.

She’s part of the City of London’s socio-economic diversity taskforce which aims to promote equity of progression in the UK’s financial and professional services. Boyce said the Law Society is seeking views from the legal profession to see what more can be done to boost socio-economic diversity.

It currently provides funding to education charity Young Citizens so that law can be taught in schools. “Our members also take part in Young Citizens’ Experts in Schools programme, where professionals engage with small groups of young people to teach young people about the power structures that make up our society,” she said.

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7 Comments

Anon

Nah.

Politics should be though. My politics A level has probably ended up being the most useful to me (did sciences and another humanities alongside it). Most of the population do not understand basic U.K. politics, and the course was surprisingly good at covering it.

(6)(6)

Anon 2.0

Why not both?

(8)(2)

When you make a burger or kebab, sauce goes on the meat not the salad

Teaching law to all pupils could be beneficial.

Not really for the content but more to develop critical analysis and the tendency to verify information.

The amount of people who will share rubbish on social media such as a competition from a “Virgin Holidays” that is a day old account with 100 likes is staggering.

Teaching law to students would be encourage people to cross reference information and form their own conclusions instead of blindly accepting what’s in front of you as fact.

(21)(0)

Anon

No need for this. What the education system is missing is a personal finance course. Teaching people about managing money (outside of business A Levs), saving, investing, compound interest, using debt appropriately etc.

So many people not taught in schools or by parents to be financially literate.

(18)(2)

Whale

Get in the sea.

(1)(2)

anon.

Actually, if PSHE/Sociology/Citizenship or whatever it is called was taught properly in schools, children and teens would fully understand their rights and how the politics of the country work. Instead, that 2 hour block per week in the curriculum is taught as a doss lesson where kids can do what they want and have very little knowledge or interest in it. Kids know it is time to “chill” because the teachers can’t be bothered, and so it becomes the most unproductive time of the week.

If schools really want to make a difference, and the law society really wants the profession to become more accessible, firms should go into schools and spend time with students, and actually present about their job. How many of these “target” kids actually know a lawyer or what they do? Getting to the people through various schemes would do far more than placing more burden on teaching professionals who already moan they do too much in their 10-12 week holiday every year

All in all though, a great idea.

(5)(2)

Anon

Surely most subjects already encourage many of the skills which would be taught in law. Teach kids something more useful like coding, maths and STEM. Leave law as a specialism for later in life.

(1)(2)

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