Watchdog's GCSE probe 'not enough'
Richard Garner has been Education Editor of The Independent for 12 years and writing about the subject for 34 years. Before becoming a journalist, he worked as a disc jockey in London pubs and clubs and for a hospital radio station. His main hobbies are cricket (watching these days) and theatre. On his days off, he is most likelt to be found at Lord’s or the King’s Head Theatre Club.
Monday 27 August 2012
The decision by exams regulator Ofqual to investigate the furore over last-minute changes to the GCSE English grade boundaries may not be enough to bring the contro- versy to a close, it was claimed yesterday.
Headteachers and opposition MPs welcomed the announcement by Ofqual that it would "look closely" into the controversy.
All sides welcome the decision by Ofqual to intervene. However, even if any investigation does side with heads in believing the grade boundaries were raised at the last minute – thus jeopardising the sixth-form or college places for up to 10,000 teenagers – many believe there would still be a need for an independent investigation into what went wrong.
Stephen Twigg, Labour's education spokesman, said there was a need for an independent cross-party inquiry – to be conducted by the Commons education select committee.
Kathryn James, director of policy for the National Association of Head Teachers, added: "I'm still absolutely clear that we do need an independent inquiry into what has gone on this summer."
The Association of School and College Leaders said it had collected evidence from more than 600 secondary schools to support the view that English exams sat by candidates in June were judged more harshly than those in January.
ASCL said it was considering mounting a legal challenge to the current grades. "The matter will only be resolved when injustices done to thousands of young people are resolved," said Brian Lightman, its general secretary, "We're certainly not calling it off yet."
Ofqual has said it will study the detail of how the grade boundaries were arrived at over the next few days and then meet the exam boards to discuss its findings.
Heads have said boundaries for a C grade were raised by up to 12 marks after several thousand students sat the paper early in January.
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
£40000 - £48000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Engineer - Windo...
£25 - 32,500K (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Produ...
£16000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This award winning independent ...
£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...