Ahead of GCSE results later today, the Green Party has warned the recent fiasco over using an algorithm to determine results illustrates the failings of placing too much emphasis on national examinations and league tables over the learning needs of individual children.
The Greens have now called for an overhaul of the education system in order to tackle the disadvantage and inequality within it and provide further opportunities to learn throughout life.
Green Party education spokesperson Vix Lowthion, who is also a secondary school teacher on the Isle of Wight, said:
The education system needs a complete overhaul to bring it into the 21st century.The results fiasco is a clear example of how the current system is not fit for purpose. The mere idea of adjusting results by algorithm in order to fit in with league tables shows just how warped the system has become and how little it prioritises the most important aspect, the students.As teachers we are nurturing the leaders of tomorrow and so we must stop limiting their potential through high stakes testing which creates unnecessary pressure and instead promote a system of continuous assessment to enhance the learning of each individual child.
The Green Party has issued a five point plan to overhaul the education system and encourage learning for life:
- Trust teachers and take into account regular centre assessed grades at fixed points throughout the course for GCSE and A level
- Reinstate opportunities for coursework and modular assessment, which was removed by Michael Gove’s reforms
- Scrap league tables of exam results, and instead focus on reporting to parents on a mix of academic, practical and cultural achievements and opportunities for students in our schools
- Evaluate the purpose of education, which is not merely to pass exams, but to equip young people with practical and academic skills for the 21st century. Students do not need a curriculum for the office workers of the past, but to become problem solvers of the future
- Support educational opportunities outside of schools including home learning, adult learning and distance learning