Talking point

Ken Boston, chief executive of the Qualification and Curriculum Authority, blamed teachers for not having understood the new exams' demands. Heads told 'The TES':

"My reaction is disbelief and anger. I think everyone who cares about students knows the exam system has been in absolute chaos over the past two years. Trying to brush this off as the fault of a profession that's struggled manfully to put everything in place is shameful."

Ken Stafford, head, Mellow Lane school, Hillingdon

"Over the past 15-20 years there have been enormous changes to specifications, papers and marking schemes. Teachers have become very adaptable. I don't buy that they weren't able to cope with these new changes."

Tim Haynes, head, Monmouth independent boys' school, Monmouthshire

"We've had coursework moderated by external examiners, and then still marked down. How can that be blamed on teachers?"

Marie Baker, head, Sandy upper school, Bedfordshire

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