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Something needs to be done. If you compare, for example, the ordinary UK GCSE Maths paper with the IGCSE (International GCSE) Maths paper, the IGCSE is much more difficult. The questions are harder and the syllabus is bigger.

Good.But it is a measure of how far we've sunk that Gove has to do this.Sadly not all (only most)of the blame can be attached to Labour.

Reasons for getting rid of Labour: Education, or lack thereof with too many tests that are meaningless just so the government can get their stats looking good and promote their policies through their national curriculum.

Absolutely great. This is one policy that has been long overdue.

Congratulations Michael !

On the matter of foreign language learning, the education system needs to move away from the grammar tution that puts so many off language learning and place more emphasis on the use of conversational language, which by its very nature is more interactive and engages the student.

Most important of all is that language lessons should be taken on a daily basis, this is vital to ensure that vocabulary is reinforced and that the student gains confidence by daily use of active spoken language and passive listening skills.

If we are serious about language learning we have to make sure that the cirriculum is structured to allow for daily language lessons.



Science teaching needs attention and a return to teaching fundamental principles with some rigour

An EU-wide examination standard, independent of the UK government would be an excellent idea.

Wow. Rare unanimity.

In the global economy, it's even more important that foreign employers can trust British qualifications and vice-versa. We're at a competitive disadvantage due to the recent (last 20 years, not just under Labour) fall in standards.

"At the heart of Mr Gove's speech will be a pledge to make British exams comparable to international standards"

-the usual confusion and possibly deliberate. ConHome please take note.It is time to get one's terms of reference clear and stop the misleading.

Education is a devolved matter to Scotland. These matters are:

Sport and Arts
Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing
Local Government
Economic development
Social work
Emergency services
Public records
Some transport

He is not referring to Scotland. This refers to England only and is not a "British" policy in any way as some of the above contributors seem to think. It is English and the Conservative should have the clarity of mind, the honesty and the guts to make this clear from the start in this thread and others where policy is discussed.

An EU-wide examination standard

Save for the fact that Switzerland is not part of the EU and adoption of this standard would be the choice of our own sovereign government.

"An EU-wide examination standard, independent of the UK government would be an excellent idea."

Now you're just trying to wind us up :P

Much as I distrust the UK government when it comes to exam standards I trust the EU even less. It is more remote and wouldn't be able to resist the temptation to insert pro-EU propaganda. Furthermore our education system is different from other countries.

No one is more in favour of rebasing our corrupted exam system than me but am I the only one worried that this is symptomatic of a growing internationalism caused by a loss of self confidence.

Why do we have to have our exams verified internationally? "Overseas" O & A Levels are still respected worldwide, except in England.
We have allowed GCSEs and domestic A levels to be debauched, that started under a Conservative government. I know it seems perfectly reasonable and in accordance with the known facts to believe that all modern politicians of all parties are useless pygmies not to be trusted to run a school raffle let alone a school system....

... But its still a bit depressing that Michael Gove doesn't even trust himself to rise to the occasion. If the answer's France, it's the wrong question. We don't need international oversight, we need politicians who can.

"The IB is managed beyond the reach of politicians – it cannot be devalued by ministers anxious to manipulate the figures to flatter their record".

Precisely; the consistent level of results over the years in the IB gives it a legitimacy not mirrored by A levels.

In 1999, the Labour government deliberately debauched the GCSE and A Level examinations. It did this by appointing their own appointees to run them. It also dictated, in detail, what had to be taught, the questions to be asked and the things you had to know. In return, the teachers were reduced to cramming the candidates so that their targets were met. Children were forced into subjects which they had no intention of passing and which they did not want to take. The marking system was made so unfair that a Senior Examiner (I was in the room at the time) admitted that she had no idea of the marking scheme in her own specialist examination for A level!
I have no knowledge of the International GCSE, or of the IB. However, I am assured that they are both run by independent bodies and that they have - neither of them - anything to do with the EU!.

Let's face it, we are in a no one must fail system. And the labour party thinks you can buy interlect, they would happily 'dumb down' the whole world than admit they are wrong!

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