Business group welcomes planned return to O-level style qualifications
25 Jun 2012
The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has welcomed Government proposals that would see a scrapping of GCSEs, and a return to a system similar to the former O-level.
The business group believes that scrapping GCSEs will lead to an increase in standards among core subjects, including English, maths and science.
The news follows long-standing media speculation over whether educational standards have dropped in recent years, with some alleging that competition for business among examination boards has prompted a ‘race to the bottom’.
Alex Jackman, Senior Policy Adviser at the FSB, said, ‘We know businesses have long felt let down by the current GCSE system, which in far too many cases has failed to teach youngsters even the most basic of skills in reading, writing and arithmetic’.
‘Most businesses don’t need staff with a GCSE in global citizenship or needlework, they need work-ready employees who can write a properly punctuated sentence free from spelling mistakes, and mentally able to work out a simple maths problem.’
However, Mr Jackman also highlighted the role played by vocational courses, and urged the Government not to concentrate on academic subjects alone.