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GCSE’s to be scrapped

Michael Gove has launched a consultation into improving exam standards which is expected to recommend scrapping the National Curriculum for secondary schools.

GCSE exams are to be scrapped and more challenging exams introduced

Michael Gove has launched a consultation into improving exam standards which is expected to recommend scrapping the National Curriculum for secondary schools.

Ministers also want to remove the qualifications from official league tables as part of a radical move to boost standards among 14 to 16 year-olds in England.

Pupils starting GCSEs in September next year will be the last to sit the exams, which will be scrapped due to fears that they are too easy and fail to prepare teenagers for the demands of sixth form and university.

In their place, the Government is to introduce a range of tough new qualifications modelled on the old O-level to stretch pupils further, particularly in the core subjects of English, maths and science. In further changes, less academic pupils will sit easier exams, which will be modelled on old-style CSEs.

Ministers also want to scrap the National Curriculum for secondary schools — giving head teachers complete freedom to set their own lessons. The move is being billed as the most radical overhaul of secondary education in 30 years.
But it is bound to provoke fierce hostility from teaching unions amid claims that it risks creating a two-tier system and consigning below-average pupils to a second-class education.

A public consultation – which is expected to run for 12 weeks – will suggest that pupils starting GCSEs next year will be the last to sit the exams. They will take the tests in 2015. Under the plans, pupils will sit the same paper nationwide, which will be set by a single exam board.

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