Should GCSE's be scrapped as a qualification if education becomes compulsory to 18?

(18 Posts)
complexnumber Wed 14-Nov-12 04:54:17

Just a thought.

I am beginning to think they are a bit past their use by date as fewer and fewer students are leaving school at 16. (or have I made that up)

By all means have an exam to decide upon suitability for further educational courses, but does it need to be a 'Qualification', with all the baggage that comes with it.

Knowsabitabouteducation Wed 14-Nov-12 05:22:28

It depends on the alternative you are proposing.

scaevola Wed 14-Nov-12 05:29:51

I'd be interested in what sort of exam you envisage.

And what the abolition of GCSEs (or other qualitigation awarding exam) will mean for those who leave school at 16? For the change to education to 18 is not a raising of the school leaving age; some will leave at 16.

APMF Wed 14-Nov-12 08:54:49

Isn't getting good qualifications the purpose of staying on to 18? Otherwise it's just a day care centre for 16-18 year olds.

DS is in year 12 and a fair few if his friends left to do apprenticeships. They have GCSEs as proof of a certain standard of education. I think getting rid of them would be a terrible idea, they need something to work towards.

Themumsnot Wed 14-Nov-12 09:06:32

Typically, you take a much wider range of subjects at GCSE than you carry on post 16. If you scrapped GCSEs how would you propose to assess pupils' attainment in the subjects they no longer studied?

LeBFG Wed 14-Nov-12 09:15:50

In France, 15/16 year olds do a general paper covering maths, french, english and a couple of other subjects - much more narrow focus than the UK (though they get taught more subjects than this). They get one overall mark. With this and class reports they decide what to do post-16 which could be vocational (incl apprentiships), academic or a something inbetween. It seems to work well here. The bac is broader than A-levels however and they take 3 years over it. I think the bac prepares pupils for degrees much more than A-levels do.

For example, the french on my degree course (biology) were versed to a much higher level in maths for example and out-stripped the rest of us in the statistics courses.

chloe74 Wed 14-Nov-12 11:01:09

Simple answer is yes they should be scrapped. Some sort of test at 14 to determine suitability for which direction to go until 18 wou8ld be a much better idea.

Tressy Wed 14-Nov-12 11:07:04

The school leaving age isn't rising to 18. You will still be able to leave school at 16 but if going into employment some continuing education has to be provided. Apprenticeship, training etc. I don't know how it will work in unskilled jobs but guess the employer will have to sign off some sort of certificate to prove that training has been implemented.

complexnumber Wed 14-Nov-12 18:24:22

I confess, I am not very clued in with any govt's plans for 16-18 education. And it's also true that I haven't thought up a coherent alternative.

But I think that there aren't many jobs available to a 16 y/o clutching a bunch of GCSE's

Again, I could be completely wrong.

BackforGood Wed 14-Nov-12 18:40:30

There are a lot of other things you can do though - through apprenticeships or technical NVQs and other college courses.

Bonsoir Wed 14-Nov-12 18:41:40

Yes! Yes! Yes! All those exams interfere with education.

Kez100 Thu 15-Nov-12 07:10:44

No, because at 16 they should be able to achieve a broad range of qualifications. Then, have the choice to specialise 16-18.

Some children mIght need to continue with English and Maths but that can be made compulsory if the government want, to run alongside more focussed courses - be that A levels, IB, Diplomas or other vocational courses.

FuckingWonderwoman Thu 15-Nov-12 07:19:01

Yes, it is mad the way we have exams at 16, 17 and 18. Mine will be doing the IB to get away from this madness.

wordfactory Thu 15-Nov-12 08:28:33

I think so, yes.

I think there should be proficiency exams in perhaps English and Maths, for those who might wish to demonstrate their proficiency at age 16, but other than that, no.

lljkk Thu 15-Nov-12 08:35:55

Oh GREAT idea, yet more education reforms, because we haven't had enough of them, lately. hmm

I think we should go back to allowing school leavers at 16. Forcing kids to stay on in some fashion has many of its own perils.

squeezedatbothends Tue 20-Nov-12 22:09:21

The head of Eton is reported in The Telegraph saying the very same thing this week - it's an idea gaining a lot of credence. The IB is one example of this - their students follow a primary programme and middle years programme that are not examined but which build the research and ethical skills required to do well at IB. This is one of the reasons that British students who are parachuted into the system at 16 have found it so hard - the IB starts when you are 6. The principle of an holistic educational philosophy leading to the age of 18 is what makes the international schools system so enviable.

tiggytape Wed 21-Nov-12 09:06:26

I think there is benefit to covering a wide curriculum and then specialising between the ages of 16 and 18.
I cannot imagine most pupils being thrilled about having to study an A Level standard syllabus in a vast array of subjects if they decide that academic rather than vocational education is for them. It is much better to do a slightly lower level exams at 16 and drop weed out some subjects early.

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