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Sunak seeks to shake up A-levels he and his colleagues created, writes Teachers' Union boss Dr Patrick Roach
22 September 2023, 14:11
Dr Patrick Roach is the General Secretary of the Teachers' Union The NASUWT
The post-16 qualification system that the Prime Minister is so concerned about is exactly the same system that this Government imposed on schools and colleges not all that long ago.
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This is not the post-16 system that the Government inherited in 2010. A-levels and post-16 learning offers look the way they do now because this is how this Government wanted them to look.
The problems that the Prime Minister claims to have identified and wants to solve were created by his ministerial colleagues.
It is ironic that the 14-19 qualification reforms discarded by the Government were on a path to deliver a range of broad, balanced, relevant and engaging learning pathways for young people.
It was being developed in partnership with teachers, employers, learners, the higher education sector and other stakeholders, based on evidence and guided by a well-resourced strategic plan.
There was no good reason to scrap it. The Government was warned that there was no good reason to scrap it but did so nonetheless.
There is certainly a good case for reviewing the qualifications system that the current Government has foisted on schools and colleges.
Anyone with a stake in the system will rightly be sceptical about whether a Government that caused these problems in the first place is best placed to resolve them.