GCSE - call for inquiry
ATL, along with 11 organisations representing headteachers, schools, colleges, unions and local authorities, is calling for an urgent independent investigation into the GCSE English debacle which saw discrepancies in grading between January and June 2012.
ATL members have been asked to add their voice to the growing campaign by signing a petition calling for the inquiry to investigate the fall in GCSE English results and to justify the differences between winter and summer awards.
As part of the response to the regrading, some 180 pupils have also started legal action against exam regulator Ofqual and exam bodies AQA and Edexcel. They want GCSE English exam papers taken in June this year regraded now in line with the papers taken by their fellow pupils in January this year. The pupils are joined in their legal action by 117 schools, 36 councils and seven professional bodies from the length and breadth of England.
Some 70% of parents, polled by the TES, criticised this year's marking with 49% demanding the independent inquiry start immediately.
The grading errors in GCSE English will have massive implications for both students and schools. Not only will students not know if they've got places in sixth-forms or colleges, but many will now lose out on apprenticeships.
For many other students, it will affect their ability to go to university, as many institutions demand at least a C in GCSE English for admission, regardless of A-level results.
This unprecedented alliance, led by the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) and the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), also includes the National Union of Teachers (NUT), the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference (HMC) and the Girls' School Association (GSA), with the latter two representing the majority of the UK's top independent schools.
An emergency motion calling for an inquiry into the issue was passed at TUC earlier this month. For details, see this page on the TUC website.