Parents of Taunton students write to David Cameron over GCSE exams retake plans (From This is The West Country)
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Parents of Taunton students write to David Cameron over GCSE exams retake plans
IRATE parents and guardians at a Taunton secondary school are protesting at Government plans to stop pupils retaking exams to get better grades.
They are writing to Prime Minister David Cameron to complain about plans to only include the first GCSE exam results and not retakes in the school league tables.
The initiative aims to cut the number of students put in for GCSE exams a year early in the knowledge that they could then try to raise their grades by taking resits, which would boost their school’s ranking.
Parents and guardians from Bishop Fox’s School are writing to the Prime Minister objecting to the new policy – they have been sent a template letter by the school for them to sign and send off.
It says: “My child’s school had intended to give students the opportunity to take these crucial exams on more than one occasion in order to improve their chances of achieving a level 2 qualification.
“Whilst the school wanted to do the best for each individual student, we as parents were also keenly aware of the symmetry between the interests of both the student and the school in this matter.
“Sadly, that decision has now been reviewed as the school wrestles with the dilemma in being asked to resolve the conflict between needs of the child against those of the institution.
“I cannot understand how this equates with your apparent efforts to raise standards at a time when you have insisted that young people continue to study until the age of 18 to secure level 2 qualifications in English and maths.”
The letter adds that the announcement was made in an “outrageous manner without advanced warning” and undermines confidence in the education system and the Prime Minister.
No one was available at Bishop Fox’s for comment as it is half-term.
Education Secretary Michael Gove said early entry exams are “a damaging trend that is harming the interests of many pupils”.
He added: “The evidence shows that candidates who enter early perform worse overall than those who don’t, even after resits are taken into account.
“It seems likely that candidates are being entered before they are ready.”
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