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STOP PRESS........ Last years record breakers were today officially downgraded to underachieving thicko's. :lol:

http://lifestyle.aol.co.uk/parenting/schoo...816061109990001

What a farce! Hardly unpredictable was it? It's a crime what is being done to our children.

btw Which employer worth his salt will actually care who has passed what anymore?

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Every year we hear this sort of thing and maybe due to syllabus changes the exams aren't as hard as they used to be. That's certainly the case with GCSEs, although I'm less certain about A-Levels. Even if that is the case, it's not the fault of the kids who have taken those exams, so I say well done to anyone who has got their A-Levels today and don't take any notice of any miserable dogs in the manger who deride your achievements. It seems to me that the people who are quickest to knock those with academic qualifications are those that don't have them.

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we have the same issue over here in the States. Exacerbated by Bush and his No Child Left Behind initiative which on the outside looks great, but on the inside might actually be more harmful than beneficial.

The issue is that you have theories thought up to fix one problem and instead of affixing that solution to the problem area/s, it is spread over the whole of the land. Thus fixing issues in some areas, and dumbing down or screwing up other areas. However, major scholastic policy cannot be tailor made because certain parental/social organizations will think it's an affront to their race, financial standing, etc. when in all actuality it's a problem being corrected regardless of any other issues most likely to be brought up in certain sensitive ares such as this.

It'd be lovely if all schools could be treated equally, but until a standard level of funding, teaching and staffing levels are employed this won't happen and therefore this issue will continue...

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The thing that annoys me most about seeing the current situation with A levels is how poorly recognised the IB generally is. With a quarter of all grades being A's this year, you still need disproportionately high grade on the IB to get into an English University.

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For those who like to spend their time slagging of anyone who achieves anything and being generally negative consider this. The A level results this year represent the equivalent of one child in 30 achieving an A grade. So you put your child into a primary class of 30, 12 years later only one of those children will finish school / college with the grades which people criticise so heavily even though those grades actually represent real achievement for the individual.

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most of the criticsm comes from those who didnt get decent grades and therefore because people are doing better than them, then its because the exams are getting easier.

Me, I dont think they are, I think they're differrently worded and focused. Plus teaching might well have got better/focused on passing the exams.

Although the figures actually show that the Independent Schools and Selective State Schools got the A's whilst the others increased the number of passes (E or above)

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I don't think exams are getting easier. Miss Roversmum is in the first year of A-levels and she has just had her AS results. She has worked very hard - sometimes with very poor teaching and support from the college - to achieve her grades. I also disagree with those who say that subjects such as Sport and Dance are 'easy' - believe me, they are not, it's a different kind of pressure.

Well done to our youngsters for their excellent results.

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Ah yes, Paul, but the 30 back in "my" day was far ahead of any 30 in todays schools;)

Seriously, the kids of today have to learn so much more. That which is considered unnecessary is discarded. It's a pity they've discarded some of the things that employers feel is necessary.

The three things that must remain are, maths (yes, maths, the "s" is there because it's an abbreviation of mathmatics). Spelling (because bad spelling kills the meaning) and (for me) presentation, if you can't put a reasonable argument forward in presentable way, then it's not worth reading or listening to.

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The thing that annoys me most about seeing the current situation with A levels is how poorly recognised the IB generally is. With a quarter of all grades being A's this year, you still need disproportionately high grade on the IB to get into an English University.

Not according to the chart I have on my desk.

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A quarter of all A-Level grades this year were A's?! That is unbelieveable, just unbelieveable. You cannot be serious? Something is very wrong for that to be true!

That's what it said in the Telegraph yesterday.

As for the chart stuwilky, I can only speak from my experience and that of my friends, but everyone I know has felt that and the offers recieved don't really match up with what they expect from A level results. I would think they have yet to really figure out how to gauge the 1-7 as compared to letter grades.

By the way I'm not knocking anyone's achievements. Getting a good grade is always an achievement.

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That's what it said in the Telegraph yesterday.

As for the chart stuwilky, I can only speak from my experience and that of my friends, but everyone I know has felt that and the offers recieved don't really match up with what they expect from A level results. I would think they have yet to really figure out how to gauge the 1-7 as compared to letter grades.

By the way I'm not knocking anyone's achievements. Getting a good grade is always an achievement.

What do you think the IB should be worth Eddie, compared to say 2 A levels?

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Well for me you can't compare the IB to two a levels. The IB requires that you take 7 subjects, 6 of which you sit IB exams for, as well as a couple of other components.

If you tried to compare two IB exams in the same subject, for me a 6 is the equivalent of an A, in certain subjects that might even slip to a 5, but I think a 6 would be a solid comparison.

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Ah yes, Paul, but the 30 back in "my" day was far ahead of any 30 in todays schools;)

Seriously, the kids of today have to learn so much more. That which is considered unnecessary is discarded. It's a pity they've discarded some of the things that employers feel is necessary.

The three things that must remain are, maths (yes, maths, the "s" is there because it's an abbreviation of mathmatics). Spelling (because bad spelling kills the meaning) and (for me) presentation, if you can't put a reasonable argument forward in presentable way, then it's not worth reading or listening to.

It appears Dave that you may be a bit behind the times.

You say that kids have to learn so much more? Well what about everything that comes along with computer literacy? Nowadays one would struggle to get in most kinds of decent job without being upto a certain level of computing capability. Things change in education because they have to - there's only so much education you can throw at a kid and if that means things like spelling and 'presentation' will suffer slightly then so be it.

And also, it's a fact of life that any generation will claim that they had it harder/had to learn more/struggled with luxuries etc compared to the current generation.

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ihb, I was being a little TIC, but whatever, after all, I'm now in my 60's, I've survived my "alcohol years, got over my "smoking years", can still spell, can probably add up in my head faster than someone using a caculator, despite that.........

Kids today have to face a future that is far harder than I ever had to.

What I meant by kids having to "learn much more" is that they don't learn the background that (you maybe) I did. I've been through quite a number of decades, these kids haven't, I've learnt through those decades, ask those kids after they've lived through the same number of years. They will learn background, that their kids won't have to. It's called progress, evolution, modernisation.

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What do you think the IB should be worth Eddie, compared to say 2 A levels?

I wonder if the problem with IB is no one has a clue what it is? I've read a couple of references to it on here from Eddie but that is all. Frankly if Eddie sent me a CV showing his IB achievements i would not have a clue what he was talking about. The risk then is the CV would be discarded through the potential employer's lack of knowledge.

So in all seriousness, what is this IB thing?

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Prizes for all - what is the point of exams if tehy don't separate the less-able from the able?

There are hardly any failures, that is bloody ridiculous.

I feel sorry for them.

So if the UK had more kids labelled as failures when they left school, you would be happier!

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I wonder if the problem with IB is no one has a clue what it is? I've read a couple of references to it on here from Eddie but that is all. Frankly if Eddie sent me a CV showing his IB achievements i would not have a clue what he was talking about. The risk then is the CV would be discarded through the potential employer's lack of knowledge.

So in all seriousness, what is this IB thing?

It's the International Baccalaureate, usually used in international schools, but it is also becoming increasingly popular in certain areas of the United States and in the UK. Basically for the full degree you have to take 3 "higher" level and three standard level exams of your choosing (although you can choose to do 4 higher level exams and 2 standard if you want to), although you are required to take English, a second language, a science, maths and a social science. This makes your choices somewhat limited, but it also forces you to continue studying in every area right until you finish school, which in my opinion is a good thing. On top of that you have to take Theory of Knowledge, which is essentially a philosophy course, as well as write an extended essay, which is a bit like a dissertation. Each exam is marked out of 7 and you can then get an extra 3 points through your extended essay and TOK combined.

It also has some other requirements such as 50 hours of "community service", 50 hours of sport and some other things, which are sort of nonsense, but you do actually have to do them.

You can just take one off exams, but I've never really understood the point in that. You can also add extra standard exams to your diploma, but I've never found that really helped me.

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It's true and I know a good number of colleges and universities in the United States allow you to skip freshman year if you've taken the IB, but I think it still lacks general recognition in the UK, although I'm sure that will change gradually.

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Well for me you can't compare the IB to two a levels. The IB requires that you take 7 subjects, 6 of which you sit IB exams for, as well as a couple of other components.

If you tried to compare two IB exams in the same subject, for me a 6 is the equivalent of an A, in certain subjects that might even slip to a 5, but I think a 6 would be a solid comparison.

I wasnt trying to compare the IB to anything, I was asking you to.....

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