CBI’s curriculum proposals. A step forward, but big questions remain

The CBI’s John Cridland has re-opened the debate about the 14-19 curriculum.                 http://news.cbi.org.uk/news/john-cridland-festival-of-education-speech/ Cridland has called for GCSE to be abolished within 5 years ‘High-stakes exams at 16 are from a bygone era’ and, in a further swipe at the Gove/Morgan examination reforms, for the status of vocational learning to be upgraded.  ‘For too … Continue reading CBI’s curriculum proposals. A step forward, but big questions remain

New league tables bed down Gove’s curriculum

Still running the show? Last week’s secondary school league tables began to bed down the first of Michael Gove’s examination changes for 14-19. The 2014 tables excluded performances in resits or in BTEC style vocational qualifications –and gave further prominence to  English Baccalaureate subjects.   As a result many schools found that though their overall performance in … Continue reading New league tables bed down Gove’s curriculum

‘All in it together’

Radicaled has posted critiques of Labour’s  polices for 14-19 year olds  to emphasise the continuity  with those of  Lord (Kenneth) Baker, whose support for a strong academic –vocational separation and in particular, for University Technology Colleges (UTCs) offering employment specialisms,  led to Tory tensions with Gove’s ‘grammar school education for all’ approach. https://radicaled.wordpress.com/2014/08/27/tristram-hunt-and-two-nation-labour/ https://radicaled.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/tech-bacc-step-back/ As … Continue reading ‘All in it together’

GCSEs, Margaret Thatcher and Michael Gove

The recent publication of official papers from the 1980s provides further context to the introduction of GCSEs. http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/dec/30/national-archives-revelations-released-documents .  The new common exam, reflected the growth of comprehensive schools, many being given the go ahead by Thatcher herself,  while  a dual system of CSE and GCE O-level examinations, the former  still acting primarily as a … Continue reading GCSEs, Margaret Thatcher and Michael Gove

Gove’s exam reforms may still come off the rails

After months of concern, alarm  bells are ringing over accreditation of new A-level syllabuses http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/dec/02/headteachers-criticise-government-chaotic-a-level-reform-delays Maths and further maths have been put back a year to 2017, while chemistry and English literature syllabuses, due to be taught from 2105  have yet to be given the green-light by Ofqual. With continued doubts  about the new GCSEs also … Continue reading Gove’s exam reforms may still come off the rails

Tech-Bacc, step back.

Labour has published Qualifications Matter, proposals for 14-19 education, as part of its Policy Review (www.yourbritain.org.uk/uploads/editor/files/Skills_Taskforce_3rd_report.pdf) . It’s going ahead with its support for a Tech-Bacc, something announced by Ed Miliband two years ago and designed for the ‘Forgotten 50%’ of school leavers who do not go to university. Under Labour’s proposals, all 14 year … Continue reading Tech-Bacc, step back.