New era should end cousework

A new year, a new term and a new Secretary of State for Education - an excellent time, I would suggest, for a resolution to tackle head on, once and for all, the (im)morality of coursework.

If we continue to delude ourselves that coursework carried out away from school does not compromise students, their families and teachers, efforts to improve education in this country will similarly continue to be compromised.

Hard work by both students and teachers is currently undermined as national examination grades are exposed to suspicion of, or accusation of excessive teaching "assistance", parental "help" or internet "support". As it stands, we are (albeit unwittingly) allowing immorality and, dare I say the "C" word - "cheating", to become an integral part of the curriculum.

Ban unsupervised coursework. Make all examination boards offer firmer guidelines regarding coursework, as well as a coursework-free option for all subjects. Let us resolve in 2005 to put trust back into education.

The Rev Robert Easton Chaplain and RS teacher Brighton college Eastern Road Brighton, East Sussex

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