Dead languages beat live subjects in EBac madness

28th January 2011 at 00:00

The EBac is pointless. Its name suggests that it is an actual programme of study like the challenging International Baccalaureate. Instead, if you've got some GCSEs, you will get another piece of paper to wrap the certificates in - no extra work involved.

This Bac-lite raises false expectations and risks debasing and devaluing not only the term "baccalaureate" but this country's internationally respected qualifications system. It is grossly unfair to hold a school to account for a target which has been applied retrospectively and could not possibly have been foreseen two and a half years ago when those GCSE choices were being made.

It is also a fairly arbitrary target, as most pupils will find that their GCSE in ICT will be of more practical and economic use to them in the future than a GCSE in Ancient Greek, and yet it is the latter which was chosen for the EBac.

What evidence is there that the EBac will "be popular with parents"? The Government is increasing bureaucracy with an expensive, pointless, repetitious piece of paper that will not have any meaning for FE, HE or employers.

Philip Parkin, General secretary, Voice: the union for education professionals.

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