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Money for nothing

Can anything be done to limit the profit-making and commercialisation of the exam boards before the next round of exam reforms unleashes another wave of exam-based textbooks? Can something be written into the new contracts for setting and organising exams that will limit the ways in which students (and their parents) are being fleeced for exam fees?

The most blatant example is shown by the arrangements in place for students who want to get their papers back after they have taken an exam. My example comes from my experience as an A-level history teacher. The Edexcel board charges students #163;11 for a photocopy of their exam. The board will then email the scanned copy of the exam to the student. The papers will already have been scanned for the marking process. The emailed paper does not have any marks or comments on it. The student and I will go through the paper to try to work out how the student can improve when taking the exam again. Charging #163;11 for clicking a few buttons - nice work if you can get it.

Martin Jeanneret, Secondary teacher, Eastbourne.

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