This paper has been stimulated by the presentation given by Sean Harford, National Director, Education, Ofsted, at The Telegraph Festival of Education, Wellington College, on 23rd June 2017 (Harford 2017), where he described Ofsted’s current curriculum survey. Although, we were unable to be present at the talk, the slides themselves gave us considerable pause for thought about the place of design & technology in the curriculum. This school subject is of special interest to us and is, in our view, much misunderstood and, as a result, underrated. We have very much enjoyed producing this paper which reflects upon the nature, purpose and teaching of design & technology in the curriculum in the light of Sean’s presentation.
As ever, we hope this paper will stimulate discussion and we look forward to your comments.