The Green Party has called for a complete overhaul of the education system as A Level students collect their results.
The Green Party also wants to see university tuition fees scrapped and maintenance grants. Photo credit: PA
With the number of pupils achieving the top grades falling, Greens say the Government must give schools the funding they need to make sure all pupils succeed whatever their background.
A Level Results Day 2016: Record university offers as top grades slip
Government education reforms fail to address early learning gap, warns Save the Children
Job cuts would be ‘first nail in the coffin’ for construction, warns industry specialist
Brexit: Uncertainty in the labour market as employers slow decisions on hiring and investment
Vix Lowthian, Green Party Education spokesperson, said: “Pupils across the country have worked incredibly hard for these results – and those who have got the grades they hoped for deserve huge congratulations.
“But it’s important to remember that for many, the current one-size-fits-all assessment regime doesn’t work and forces educators to teach to the test, rather than giving pupils a fully-rounded understanding of their subject.
“It’s crucial that we move away from a narrow focus on academic qualifications like A Levels to a system which values vocational education and skills training. A Levels aren’t for everyone, and we have a serious skills gap in this country – it’s time we gave further education the respect and funding it needs.”
Lowthian, a teacher in the Isle of Wight who recently called for the head of Ofsted to resign after he called the island a “ghetto” with “inbreeding” added: “The attainment gap between richer and poorer pupils is still a pressing worry and this government must pledge to do far more to address it. A starting point would be to restore 2010 levels of funding in real terms for schools, ensuring it is fairly distributed between local authorities.
“Unpredictable AS Level results, meanwhile, are a consequence of the government’s constant chopping and changing of the testing regime and illustrate the damage done to young people’s futures by playing politics with education.”
The Green Party also wants to see university tuition fees scrapped and maintenance grants restored to stop education becoming a commodity.
Natalie Bennett, Green Party Leader, said: “It’s great to see an increase in the number of pupils getting into university.
“A university education isn’t just a stepping stone to a career, it’s an opportunity to broaden your horizons, step outside your comfort zone, and challenge your perspective on the world.
“That’s why it’s worrying to see many youngsters now weighing up higher education as an investment — betting on whether the boost to their future earnings will make the tens of thousands of pounds of debt worth it.
“It’s time we recognised that education is a social good, not a commodity, and scrapped tuition fees.”