Exam reform timetable changes

Published: Friday 6 Sep 2013

The Department for Education and exam regulator Ofqual have today confirmed further details on the programme of reform for A-levels and GCSEs.

Commenting on the news, Andrew Hall, AQA's Chief Executive, said:

'We are pleased that the independent chair's review of A-levels has found that the subject content of these qualifications is broadly right. I am grateful that Professor Mark E. Smith, vice-chancellor of Lancaster University, was able to undertake the review and bring together the expertise of the awarding bodies and specialists across the higher education sector. This review will help awarding bodies ensure that the next generation of A-levels does a better job of meeting the needs of students, higher education and employers.

'However, we do remain concerned that replacing the AS with a standalone qualification means that an important opportunity to support students' progression and enable them to study a broader curriculum will be lost.

'On GCSE, English and maths are such critical subjects in terms of equipping students for the rest of their lives that we really need to ensure we get these changes right. So I think it makes sense to prioritise these subjects, so that teachers get the new syllabus next year and can get really familiar with it before they have to start teaching the new qualification in 2015.

'It is absolutely essential that we all fully understand how the new accountability measures will work and also how the regulator plans to set and maintain standards when these new qualifications are developed.'

Read the correspondence between the Department for Education and Ofqual.


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