Government and Politics
Head of Department - Hattie Cartwright
Curriculum Map: Government and Politics Curriculum 2 Year map.xlsx
‘Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely’
Politics is, in its purest form, the study of power. It is a study of how humans gain power over one another and why. Politics encompasses a wide range of ideas and events shaped by political power. At Ark Acton Academy we offer students the opportunity to dissect and understand the various manifestations of political power that affect every corner of the globe. We believe one cannot study modern issues within politics without first gaining an understanding of the great political ideologies that still govern the modern manifestations of power we see on a daily basis.
Therefore, students at Ark Acton Academy begin their study of politics by engaging with liberal ideas that grew during the enlightenment. They consider the works of classical liberals, such as John Locke, and also read the work of modern liberals, such as John Rawls. It is only after studying this ideology that they can engage with the key debates that surround our modern liberal democracy – ought we extend the franchise further? Should we make voting compulsory?
This link between ideology and modern day political issues is not only shown through the study of liberalism. Students at Ark Acton Academy study conservatism, which allows them to comprehend the policies of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s and why an ancient institution such as the monarchy is still relevant in modern Britain.
The study of socialism, towards the end of Year 12, allows them to understand the rise and fall of the trade unions in the latter half of the 20th century, and the changing nature of the Labour party from the Attlee Government of 1945 to the centrist policies of New Labour at the turn of the millennium.
Going into Year 13, students at Ark Acton begin to link these core ideologies to the politics of the USA. This encourages to them to understand that power, even if studied in two modern day liberal democracies, may manifest in completely different ways.
By the end of their journey of studying politics at Ark Acton Academy, students will not only leave with an understanding of the important political debates of the modern era, but also their undeniable links to ideologies that began hundreds of years ago.