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Socialist Review Index (1993–1996) | Socialist Review 169 Contents

Socialist Review, November 1993

Selina Todd

Talk Back

Bottom of the class

From Socialist Review, No. 169, November 1993.
Copyright © Socialist Review.
Copied with thanks from the Socialist Review Archive.
Marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.

The recent examination results highlight once again the government’s blinkered attitude to education. It is unfair to base qualifications on students’ achievements during a frantic few hours. As discrepancies between predicted and actual results prove: some do better, some worse than usual. Not only does this system traumatise many ‘A’ level students, but it alienates the vast majority of young people who reject this rigidly academic system at age 16 or younger.

The ridiculously high status given to academic examinations by a government which terms ‘A’ levels as ‘gold standard’, encourages many schools – and society – to glorify this type of success, while unfortunately undervaluing non-academic achievements and the merits of fairer methods of assessment such as coursework. I know which grade Tories deserve for their understanding of ‘comprehensive education’. Unclassified.

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