The Prince of Wales is to create a cadre of elite teachers to bring neglected areas of study back to England’s schools.

The Prince’s Teaching Institute has introduced a two-year Master’s degree for secondary school teachers, which is to be taught by Cambridge academics.

The Prince of Wales established this charitable institution in order to protect traditional subjects against the rise of teaching in schools which places more emphasis on skills and shuns a focus on knowledge.

The course will lead to a full University of Cambridge Master’s degree, with those that graduate obtaining a Master of Studies (MSt) in Advanced Subject Teaching.

This is not the first time that the Prince of Wales has criticised modern teaching; in 2008, he said that moves to make certain subjects irrelevant in schools ‘on the basis that all we had known and learned had suddenly become irrelevant, old-fashioned [and] out-of-date’ were ‘bonkers and likely to end in tears.’

The programme has been created in the hope that neglected areas of study will be reintroduced into the curriculum of England’s schools.

The innovative course description states the degree will “help English and History teachers develop their subject knowledge and enhance their professional and academic standing”.

Cambridge academics will provide teaching and supervision through a combination of residential teaching in Cambridge, scheduled out of term-time and via online tuition.

The deadline for applications is April, with the two-year part-time degree running from September 2012 to July 2014. Successful applicants will largely be able to dictate what is taught, which they will then study both academically and pedagogically.

It is, however, an important aim of the programme that studies are focused on areas of the curriculum that are under-represented in schools, not least because the teachers themselves may be less familiar with them.

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