Slavery could become compulsory subject (UK)

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The slave trade and its abolition 200 years ago could become a compulsory subject in schools, it emerged yesterday.

The move is being considered as part of a review of diversity within the National Curriculum ordered by Alan Johnson, the Education Secretary.

Many teachers are already bringing the issue of slavery into history lessons

The development was revealed by David Lammy, the Culture Minister, in a speech highlighting preparations to mark the bicentenary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act next year.

Mr Lammy, MP for Tottenham and a descendant of slaves, said many people knew little about Britain's role in slavery. At most they might have watched Roots, the 1970s television series based on the Alex Haley novel, or heard of the role played by William Wilberforce in the abolition of slavery, he said.

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