Tough questions will get results

31st August 2001 at 01:00
I AM not convinced that students' lack of knowledge about geometry and algebra is due to lack of properly-qualified maths teachers (TES, August 10). The problem is with the exam boards. More questions at GCSE on these topics would ensure that they were taught more rigorously. Why the exams lack these questions is another issue altogether. Could it be that it is so much more difficult to mark, or that political pressure to induce an improvement in results, means that all difficult subjects are kept to a minimum? All science and engineering disciplines besides architecture suffer from the current excessive emphasis on probability and statistics over the traditional subjects.

Mary Jones 21 Kirk Lane Eastby, North Yorkshire

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