Latest Educational News

Exam marking out of date, says national watchdog

by Financial Times, August 23, 2003

The marking system for school examinations is not yet fit for the 21st century, the head of the national testing watchdog has said.


The latest pass rates for seven and 11-year-olds in reading, writing and maths tests, to be published on Wednesday,and GCSE results, due on Thursday, are likely to renew the debate over whether improved results reflect a genuine rise in achievement. But Ken Boston, chief executive of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, said he believed the national tests were rigorous and had been developed to an “absolutely Rolls-Royce” standard.

School league table reform attacked

by Scotsman, August 23, 2003

Ministers have been accused of attempting to dodge their commitments to reform school league tables and improve children's basic literacy and numeracy skills.

The current league table system means schools are measured on how many pupils achieve the equivalent of five good GCSEs in any subjects they take.

Father's £100,000 battle with public school

by Guardian, August 23, 2003

A man who is taking one of the country's most famous public schools to court for trying to expel his son could face a legal bill of up to £100,000, it emerged yesterday.
In what is understood to be the first case of its kind, Russell Gray is suing Marlborough College because he believes it is trying to bolster its position in the league tables at the expense of his son Rhys's education.

Rhys, 15, will miss the first month of the autumn term while his father fights to get his place back at the school in Wiltshire where Princess Eugenie is a pupil.

The £21,900-a-year school claims Rhys has an "exceptionally poor" disciplinary record and wrote to his family in June saying he would not be invited back to the sixth form regardless of his GCSE results, under a clause in the school rules about pupils"unwilling or unable to profit from the education opportunities offered".

Teachers warn primary school standards success overstated

by Guardian, August 23, 2003

The government has overstated improvements in primary school standards, according to research published yesterday. The warning came from the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) as ministers prepared to unveil national test results for seven- and 11-year-olds.
The ATL study called for a new independent body to be set up to monitor national standards.

The research, conducted by Professor Colin Richards, of St Martin's College, Lancaster, concluded that 11-year-olds had improved in English, maths and science between 1995 and 2001. But these improvements were not as great as the government has claimed.