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Controlled assessment should be redrafted

Amy Winston's criticism of controlled assessment in GCSE English specifications could go much further ("Once is never enough", 11 May): in the name of equality, the able and ambitious have been penalised most unfairly.

Planning, drafting and editing are rigorous skills not to be scoffed at - they are, after all, the basis of most higher level degrees. But students starting A-level English literature in September will often never have had such experiences.

It is no wonder that many independent schools have switched to IGCSEs, which offer conventional coursework options. But this path is closed to the maintained sector: IGCSEs do not count towards performance table points. In the meantime, pupils must suffer an impoverished version of the subject.

Andrew Millar, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.

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