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New diplomas not a disaster says exam boss, but NUT not so sure

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Following a report in the Guardian newspaper Jerry Jarvis, Edexcel's managing director, has commented:

"In view of the continued reporting on Edexcel and the Diploma, we must reiterate that we stand firmly in support of the Diploma and are committed to its success. It is a qualification developed in partnership with employers and its success is crucial to education.

"We did not describe the Diploma as being ‘in disarray’ as reported. Edexcel leads the implementation of the Diploma and we will continue to work through the complexity with all stakeholders to ensure that it is successful."

“Edexcel wants to emphasise that it remains very supportive of and totally committed to the Diploma. We are determined to make it work.

"There is a large amount of change planned for the next two years, including the introduction of new GCSEs, A levels, functional skills and the Unique Learner Number. We are committed to working with our colleagues in schools, particularly those in administration and curriculum development teams, to ensure these changes are successfully implemented.

Christine Blower, acting general secretary of the National Union of Teachers,commented:

“The NUT’s own survey shows that even in the schools introducing the diplomas the majority of staff are unfamiliar with them. Neither have the majority received clear, unambiguous information about the diplomas.

“Although teachers directly involved in teaching the diplomas consider that training for them has been appropriate, 43% believe that they have not received sufficient training.

“The NUT has warned consistently that the introduction of the diplomas would be a massive task with high risks. I urge the Government to evaluate the introduction of the first five diplomas and not introduce anymore until it can be absolutely sure that schools can cope. Local authorities have a major responsibility. Too many are falling down in their responsibilities to help schools with the diplomas.

“For the sake of young people the new diplomas have to work. How much better it would have been had the Government adopted the Tomlinson Report, which established a consensus and partnership with teachers, parents and industry. The 2013 review of qualifications has to return to the Tomlinson principles.”

To see the Guardian report go to: http://education.guardian.co.uk/schools/story/0,,2274031,00.html

You can download the Tomlinson report here:
http://www.dfes.gov.uk/14-19/documents/Final%20Report.pdf

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