NINE out of ten teachers say schools will need to close for a day to prepare for an overhaul of the curriculum this year.

Local union leaders have spoken out after a survey showed concern over teachers being unprepared for the new National Curriculum this September.

The revamped curriculum is designed to help England catch up in a global race with school systems in Hong Kong and Finland.

However academies will not be required to follow it.

The new-look curriculum puts a stronger emphasis on skills such as essay writing, problem-solving, mathematical modelling and computer programming.

The National Union of Teachers has published the results of a survey taken during the Easter holiday, which claims three quarters of teachers are not confident, or are doubtful, about whether their school can be ready in time for September.

A total of 94 per cent are calling for an extra inset day during the summer term to get ready for the changes.

Simon Jones, Lancashire’s and Blackburn’s NUT representative, said: “Comments from experienced teachers showed incredulity that the Education Secretary has failed to understand that the volume of imposed changes in education is unworkable and unsustainable. Over a third of teachers have not been able to find any time to get ready for the new curriculum.

“Teachers recognise the importance of getting the curriculum right for their school.

“But they say lack of time to reflect and plan is the major problem.

“This rushed and botched implementation of the new curriculum is just one more example of how the government is dangerously out of touch with the reality in the classroom”.

Schools councillor for Blackburn with Darwen Council Dave Harling added: “When changes of this scale are made, the impact is often underestimated by the powers that be.

“Instead teachers and schools are given unrealistic briefs they have to somehow deliver.”