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Letters extra: pupil's view of new curriculum

Curriculum 2000 has been a shambles even before day one. There were presentations and consultations at my secondary school, but no one really knew what was happening, and I don't believe it was the staff's fault.

I took five subjects. Due to my choices, I was told I would be exempt from key skills, so I would have the time. Wrong. Five subjects is possibly too much for all but the brightest students.

Of course, I still have to do the portfolio for the key skills. That wasn't what I was told. The portfolio was supposed to be "easy" and "tie in with my subjects." Except it doesn't. I have to spend time adapting work, and in the case of application of number, do my own project. Why? I'm taking A-level maths, yet I still have to be involved with this pointless scheme.

Key skills is not respected by students nor, it seems, universities. It doesn't appear to have any valid purpose; it's just another stick with which to beat us with. Yet I'm doing it, because I believe I will be disadvantaged if I don't have it on my UCAS application. I feel let down. Education is not about making pupils guinea pigs.nbsp; Chris Lewis (17) Taunton, Somerset

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