Spotlight on Exam Reforms

Trevor Fisher's picture
At the start of the next school year, new specifications will be unveiled for reformed GCSE and A Level exams. These will bring with them high level risks for the exam system in England driven by seriously questionable assumptions by Michael Gove and his allies. As the Education Select Committee is to hold an investigation into 15-19 exam reform, Local School Network supporters are invited to the debate on the reforms.

The new SOSS pamphlet EXAM REFORM – UNRESOLVED ISSUES focuses on key issues for immediate consideration with full debate on all the implications.

The current priority is to secure rigorous examination of workability. It is remarkable that the proposals are not to be trialled, tested or piloted in any way. Given the problems thrown up by the 2001 A Level and 2012 GCSE reforms, piloting is the minimum required to restore public confidence in exams. The philosophy of returning to end of course exams with no resits purely on the basis of memory test timed exercises risks producing an alienated generation.

The pamphlet includes contributions from Professor Richard Pring of Oxford University, Dr Sue Pope of Manchester University, who is chair of the general council of the Association of Mathematics Teachers , Professor Margaret Brown, of Kings College London, Trevor Fisher and Joe Vinson of NUS.

The pamphlet is available, from VIEWPOINT PO Box 3599, Stafford ST16 9RD. FIRST COPY FREE to LSN suppoters – please indicate you are an LSN supporter. Enclose a C5 stamped addressed envelope. Extra copies are £1.25 each for 2-5 (inc p&p), 6 and above £1 each (inc p&p). Cheques to be made payable to SOSS (Symposium on Sustainable Schools). Please enclose an email address if you wish to be informed of future initiatives.
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