Gove: Qualifications need reform

Michael Gove says qualifications need to be reformed

Michael Gove says qualifications need to be reformed

First published in National News © by

Education Secretary Michael Gove has said there are "lessons to be learned" from the GCSE English grading fiasco.

The crisis, which has seen thousands of students awarded lower than expected grades in the key subject, shows the need for reform, he said.

Giving evidence to the Commons education select committee, Mr Gove said: "What happened with GCSE this year caused understandable concern for parents, teachers and students and I think it's appropriate we examine what's happened in a sober fashion and also in a rigorously analytical way.

"I think there are certain lessons to be learned which encourage me to believe that we need to reform qualifications."

Mr Gove's remarks come after exam regulators in England and Wales were urged to agree a "common view" on how to deal with the GCSE grading crisis.

The WJEC exam board, which sets GCSEs in both nations, said it was in in a "difficult and unexpected" position of being given different instructions from each of the regulators.

Welsh education minister Leighton Andrews on Tuesday ordered the WJEC to re-award its English language GCSE following a Welsh Government review.

Speaking in front of the committee, Mr Gove called on Mr Andrews to "think again", saying he had made a "regrettable political intervention".

"The other thing I would say in respect of Wales is that I believe that the children who have been disadvantaged are children in Wales," Mr Gove said.

"I think the decision by the Welsh education minister Leighton Andrews is irresponsible and mistaken and I think that he has undermined confidence in Welsh children's GCSEs."

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