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Call for ‘tougher’ GCSEs in England
©University of Saskatchewan

Call for ‘tougher’ GCSEs in England

23/08/17Education

Pass marks for GCSEs in England need to be pushed in order to catch up with high performing Asian education systems, researchers from the Education Policy Institute have announced.

GCSE results are being changed to be graded between nine and one, whereby the first grades are to be published this week.

Grade four will be classified as a ‘standard’ pass – the equivalence of a C grade – and grade five will represent a ‘strong’ pass.

Researchers say that pupils need to reach the grade five boundary to match global rivals.

The study from the Education Policy Institute says that England’s school system faces an “immense challenge” if it is to match the levels of achievement in countries such as Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong and Japan.

However, GCSEs in England are being overturned in order to make them more challenging and will be decided by final exams, rather than coursework.

The first results from the new approach to GCSEs will be published for English and maths this week.

Currently, the research says that 40% of pupils in state schools have reached the ‘world-class standard’ represented by the achievement of grade five results.

David Laws, former education minister and executive chairman of the Education Policy Institute, said: “In certain subjects, such as maths, England needs both to significantly raise the number of top performers and almost halve the number of low performers it if is to compete with the world’s best.”

Pan European Networks Ltd