Imaginary response: Dear Mr Laws. In response to your bullets
1) um…why not just make the GCSE do the job they are there to do, then? Is it because Michael and his friends at the Daily Mail (the unofficial communication centre of the DfE) have worked for so long to undermine them and the thousands of people who have taken them?
2) The A* was supposed to do that, wasn’t it? And how dare you preach about caps on aspiration when those students have just had their achievement “capped” by a statistical fraud to cynically support the Tory ideology?!
3) oh yeah?! Pull the other one it’s got bells on. It has happened year after year – no one believes you will be any different. Labour might have been cynical and deaf to reasoned argument if it disagreed with their view, but Gove is another level altogether! He plays you lot like a tune…you really think Clegg gained compromise? Rubbish – Gove offered you the unthinkable, forced you to respond via the Daily Wail and got you to agree the unspeakable! He owns you…..check mate to the Tories (again)
4) there’s already provision for these students! It’s called the foundation level curriculum and includes a wide range of recognised progression routes…..well, it used to. Now we’re supposed to sell the kids to G4S so they can complete a 5 day “apprenticeship” (and don’t get me started on that) to gain a qual with less value than a G grade in Gcse Media Studies (that Gove hates).
Let’s be frank. The differentials in gcse specs may have needed widening, the core may have needed greater rigour (genuine, not statistical BS) but all the problems have been created by politicians. Schools, children, teachers have had no part in designing these systems, but have suffered from your politically motivated tinkering year after year. Learn from the best systems, you tell us? Fine – let’s start by removing political interference in education. Who alluded to that? You did in the ASCL Leader magazine before the last election, but that principle must have gone into hiding with tuition fees!