Teaching union NASUWT has said there is no evidence that the current GCSE exam system is “broken”.
The results of this year’s GCSEs in England, Wales and Northern Ireland were released today. There has been a small decrease in the number of entrants who gained an A to C grade to 69.4%, compared with 69.8% last year.
Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:
“The results show a slight percentage drop in the A*-C pass rate.
“The Government may seek to claim that these changes are as a result of it 'toughening up ' on examinations because they were 'too easy' in the past.
“This is untrue, as the evidence from the exam boards and exam regulator shows.
“However, the Government should consider that it is unlikely to be long before there is clear evidence that its policies are affecting educational outcomes.
“The denigration of state schools, the drive for a narrow elitist curriculum, the removal of essential support for families, the erosion of educational entitlements for children and young people and the relentless attacks on teachers and the teaching profession will take their toll, undermining over a decade of year-on-year improvement in the achievements of young people and schools.
“Today’s results are especially significant in that they come just two months after the Secretary of State effectively declared them worthless by plotting to scrap GCSEs and return to an elitist, two-tier O-levels system.
“This is despite the fact that there is no evidence that the current examinations system is broken or that our qualifications trail behind those of other countries.”
Rex Philips, NASUWT Wales Organiser, said:
“These results reflect the hard work of our pupils and the dedication of their teachers.
“They are a testament to an education system that is delivering for the pupils of Wales.
“The pupils of Wales have worked hard: they deserve ‘a future that works’.”
Seamus Searson, NASUWT Northern Ireland Organiser, said:
“The Education Minister recently announced additional funding for early years, the schools estate and extended schools.
“While this is all extremely welcome, we also need investment in our schools workforce in order to ensure that the achievements in evidence today are built on for the future.
“Without a well resourced and supported school workforce children and young people will not be able to achieve their best and schools will not be able to maintain the high standards we have come to expect.”