Gove’s U-turn praised

Call: David Lowe
Call: David Lowe
Share this article
Have your say

Teachers’ leaders have warned Education Secretary Michael Gove to stop messing with the school curriculum.

The call comes as headteachers applauded the minister’s decision to abandon his controversial plan to scrap GCSEs in favour of a baccalaureate.

The Government is now consulting on the plan but the teachers say they still don’t know the details of proposed changes, which will see some course work and modules scrapped.

David Lowe, director of professional support for school staff and a former Lancashire head teacher, said the U-turn was welcomed but added: “Surely the Government should have started with the curriculum and then consulted on how progress should be assessed before deciding on accountability measures.

“Mr Gove has now stated that GCSEs will not be abandoned but that there will be a move away from modules, coursework and multiple entries.”

He added: “There is nothing wrong with the current standards of GCSEs or A levels and if Mr Gove partly holds examination boards responsible for lowering standards, then I believe he should be tackling them and not the profession.”

Dr Stephen Winkley, headmaster at Rossall School, is worried that after years of tinkering with the curriculum by governments, schools are no nearer to a definitive plan from the coalition and he is concerned that pupils will be confused about what combination of exams they will be taking. He added: “Children are entitled to know what combination of exams they will be sitting. And of course, what will be the value of those subjects.”

A spokesman for the county’s Association of Teachers and Lecturers added: The changes to GCSEs proposed by the government would make exams even more unfair.