Bac is worthy of modern world

9th September 2005 at 01:00
The negative comments that have appeared in the media about the Welsh baccalaureate have subdued our sense of excitement in our school's successful completion of the recent bac pilot. Comments made by RW Wolstencroft (TES Cymru, September 2) exemplify the clear lack of understanding by the general public of the content and demands of the qualification.

The course requires students to be successful in all its different components. Students who are successful at advanced level achieve a qualification equivalent to an A-level grade A. If every student in our school and across the pilot had achieved the advanced bac, there would have been an outcry and talk of lowering of standards.

The first cohort of students worked extremely hard to meet the exacting standards required. Staff and students will confirm the commitment required to achieve success.

All our students have improved their key skills, something which employers are demanding. They have increased their knowledge of Wales, Europe and the world, which involved further improving their use of French or Spanish - again an issue of national concern.

The work-related curriculum and enterprise activities have been praised by entrepreneurs from across south Wales. The involvement of students in community programmes has not only developed their personal skills but also helped to engage the wider community.

So will those people who have not been intimately involved in the pilot of the bac allow more time for it to evolve and be fully evaluated? It is distinctive, and will produce students who are well-educated and well-rounded, enabling them to compete in the modern world.

Steve Bowden Headteacher Porth county community school Porth, Rhondda Cynon Taf

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