Early on in the summer of 2013 Michael Gove, the English Secretary of State for Education, announced that the long-established GCSE exams were not “fit for purpose” and would be phased out over the coming years.
He proclaimed his approach to be a complete reform, and editors and correspondents in England’s newspapers duly fell over themselves to express this change as a revolution.
The Daily Mail for example called it “the biggest schools shake-up in a generation, putting a new emphasis on tougher testing for 16-year-olds, with less coursework and more focus on exams at the end of two-year courses.”
There was a lot of talk about studying more Shakespeare, Dickens, poetry, algebra, genetics and ecology. Indeed, overall the Mail turned out to be something of a fan of bringing an end to ‘discredited’ qualifications.
Which made it rather a shame that they made a bit of a spelling blunder went they spoke of the secretary of state wanting to “ acheive” the best grades to bring an end to ‘discredited’ qualifications.
But unaware that his copy was being mis-spelled Mr Gove continued, “Young people in this country deserve an education system that can compete with the best in the world, a system which sets – and achieves – high expectations. Today’s reforms are essential to achieve this goal.“
Which makes it rather interesting that the announcement had nothing to say on the issue of whether pupils and students would continue to use pen and paper to complete the exams, rather than computers when the first exams start in 2017.
But it does show that the move towards computerisation in terms of writing and storage is still only a partial revolution in the UK. Exam papers will be answered by students sitting at the traditional exam desk writing with traditional pens on traditional paper.
And that in turn means that as now there will be a lot of storage space needed for the exam question papers (which have to be printed in their tens of thousands and held in safe storage before use) and then for the answer papers which will be kept (in case of appeal etc) after the exam.
So it is quite interesting to see the digital progress of the nation grinding to a halt – but not bad news for Admiral, with its major storage facility in the Midlands, all ready and waiting.
If you need storage, please contact –
Admiral Document Storage Ltd
Tel: 0800 810 1125