Number of GCSEs taken falls again
Wednesday 09 May 2012
Demand for GCSEs is falling as students continue to choose practical courses in subjects such as food safety and music.
For the third year in a row, the number of GCSEs taken dropped, down to 5.54 million last year from 6.21 million in 2007/08, according to a report by the exams regulator Ofqual.
It suggested that the decline may be due to the increase in vocational qualifications offered in schools as well as changes to the size of year groups.
In total, 7.96 million "other" (often vocational) qualifications were awarded last year, up from 2.2 million in 2002/03.
The numbers have been steadily rising year on year, although they stalled last year compared to 2009/10, when 7.99 million were awarded.
The report shows that almost 160,000 students took a Level 1 award in music performance last year, while a similar number took a Level 2 award in food safety in catering - which is equivalent to a GCSE.
It means more people took these courses than took traditional GCSEs in chemistry, German, biology, physics or Spanish.
There was also a rise in AS-level achievement last year, with 1.3 million awards compared with 1.13 million the year before.
A-level awards remained static at 0.88 million.
Ofqual's report also shows that the cost of exams has risen.
In total, schools spent £328.3 million on exam fees last year, compared with £302.6 million the year before.
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
David Cameron says anyone criticising Eric Pickles' letter to Muslims 'really has a problem'
- 1 Heavy metal producer's corpse to be mutilated by models as per his dying wish
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 3 Nineteen-year-old student left gifts for parents before taking her own life
- 4 Deliberately urinating before sex can increase risk of urinary tract infections
Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: We currently have an opportunity for you to jo...
£25000 - £29000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have be...
£16000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Calling all talented Level 2 qu...