The UK General Politics Thread Page 116

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  • RobTheBuilder 12 Jun 2013 12:12:41 6,521 posts
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    @disusedgenius I don't mean all should be thought focused, but we focus too much on memorisation.

    The problem with that percentage situation is that it doesn't allow for fluctuations in yearly performance. E.g.: If 2015 are exceptionally smart and 2016 unusually low scoring you'll end up with people of vastly different abilities getting the same grade.
  • disusedgenius 12 Jun 2013 12:20:51 5,614 posts
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    To be fair (and to trample on my own point a bit) a lot of exams allow reference material in them - when I took them there was a Maths paper which allowed some notes and English obviously allows the material to be brought in. There is also a danger of prioritising thought over actual knowledge - there needs to be a balance, of course.

    In terms of the percentage thing: do we really have such fluctuations on a national scale? Considering the amount of students taking the exams every year you'd think that ability levels would stay pretty static.
  • spamdangled 12 Jun 2013 12:24:14 27,441 posts
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    LeoliansBro wrote:
    English GCSE students now have to read 'a 19th Century novel and a whole Shakespeare play'.

    The fact that they didn't before is evidence enough this needed a shakeup.
    Didn't they?

    When I was studying GCSE's, The Tempest and To Tame A Shrew were both studied, as was Wuthering Heights.

    3DS: 4055-2781-2855 Xbox: spamdangled PSN: dark_morgan Wii U: Spamdangle Steam: spamdangled

  • LeoliansBro 12 Jun 2013 12:25:09 44,956 posts
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    Quote comes from the BBC.

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • RobTheBuilder 12 Jun 2013 12:28:47 6,521 posts
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    @disusedgenius I don't imagine it would be huge, but things like a higher birth rate in an affluent/poor area could swing the numbers too.
  • disusedgenius 12 Jun 2013 12:30:31 5,614 posts
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    So they switched a 20th Century book for a 19th Century book? Seems like an odd thing to mention by the BBC.
  • LeoliansBro 12 Jun 2013 13:00:03 44,956 posts
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    Feel free to write in asking them why.

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • mothercruncher 12 Jun 2013 15:16:32 7,817 posts
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    Fox News have got the EDL's back.

    :evil:
  • TheSaint 12 Jun 2013 15:27:41 14,827 posts
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    Surely an English GCSE exam (when I did it anyway) was basically just coursework under exam conditions. You took your texts in with you and used them to write essays.

    No real need for memorisation at all aside from having a general knowledge of the text so that you could extract quotes to substantiate your points.
  • MightyMouse 12 Jun 2013 15:32:09 1,144 posts
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    These changes are incredibly minor stuff compared to the free schools and academies. The shift from coursework to exams and back again happens every few years, sure it costs and the first lot taking the exams get worse grades, but fundamentally it's neither here nor there. Replacing grades with numbers is purely cosmetic, largely put there you'd imagine to make it harder to compare the before and after. Two year courses to become standard is again a bit of waste of time, it reduces flexibility but hardly the end of the world. Give it a few years and they'll switch back again.

    Basically, for all the talk of making GCSEs more rigorous and increasing the standard of education, these changes are just things that have been done before and we know made not the slightest bit of difference. The only places where the syllabuses will even change appear to be in History (and pretty much everyone who was consulted thinks that it's a bad new syllabus) combined with minor changes to some parts of some English syllabuses (as others have mentioned, most people actually had to study Shakespeare anyway). If you want the UK to rise up the PISA rankings for Maths and Science, this is not the way to do it.
  • faux-C 12 Jun 2013 18:01:55 9,636 posts
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    darkmorgado wrote:
    LeoliansBro wrote:
    English GCSE students now have to read 'a 19th Century novel and a whole Shakespeare play'.

    The fact that they didn't before is evidence enough this needed a shakeup.
    Didn't they?

    When I was studying GCSE's, The Tempest and To Tame A Shrew were both studied, as was Wuthering Heights.
    You obviously didn't study The Taming of the Shrew very hard though?

    Edited by faux_carnation at 18:03:40 12-06-2013
  • RedSparrows 12 Jun 2013 18:02:23 24,222 posts
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    :D
  • DaM 12 Jun 2013 18:22:49 13,529 posts
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    To Tame a Shrew is the introductory course of the Rodent Management GCSE, doh!
  • Bremenacht 12 Jun 2013 22:36:27 19,663 posts
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    I'm quite sure this decision has everything to do with publicity and politics but nothing to do with actual education.
  • MightyMouse 14 Jun 2013 13:10:34 1,144 posts
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    http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2013/jun/13/raise-interest-rate-student-loans-secret-report

    There are a couple of things about this that are so incredibly bad.

    First off, privatising student loans whilst having the government underwrite the risk is just giving money away. It makes no sense economically.

    Secondly despite the austerity talk of being responsible and not inflicting pain on future generations, this does just that. In the short term it would look good, but would cost far more in the long term. It's even worse than PFI was.

    Thirdly this came from a FOI request, and 90% of the document was redacted (just really badly as it happened). There is no national security issue here, so redacting the information is illegal. Whoever approved this should be fired.
  • Bremenacht 14 Jun 2013 13:23:53 19,663 posts
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    It was always going to happen. Next up will be the terms for repayment, to enable lenders to get a much earlier return and/or to provide a better guarantee of a return.

    Anyone who thinks you don't have to pay a student loan back if you don't earn enough will will find cause for great concern over the next 5 years, I'm pretty sure.

    Edited by Bremenacht at 21:00:14 30-06-2013
  • Bremenacht 30 Jun 2013 21:06:21 19,663 posts
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    What a wretched, amoral, grasping cunt Cameron and the UK grovelment is turning out to be. No thieving, corrupting dictator is too awful for our Dave to suck up to.

    I hear the mafia are a lovely (but misunderstood) bunch of guys! Let's do business with them too!
  • Bremenacht 30 Jun 2013 21:06:35 19,663 posts
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    Oh.

  • RichieTenenbaum 30 Jun 2013 22:04:39 2,226 posts
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    LeoliansBro wrote:
    English GCSE students now have to read 'a 19th Century novel and a whole Shakespeare play'.

    The fact that they didn't before is evidence enough this needed a shakeup.

    And I'm a fan of exams teaching real world skills. Think of them as the product pitches, presentations, sales deals of the real world. You can be fucking great 99% of the time but if you bollocks them up you are worthless to your business. And coursework can be done by parents, exams cannot.
    1) Why should pupils have to read a 19th century novel? Are all 19th century novels better than 21th century ones? Why not offer more choice? Surely reading and critiquing 21st century novels is way better. You're more likely to engage, it's more likely to be relevant, and pupils are more likely to read 21st century novels in their life.
    Gove made some right stupid comment about how reading Harry Potter in schools was showing dumbing down. It's not, really. It's about the comprehension skills in critiquing the text. Not the text itself that matters. Gove reminds me of a 15 year old compiling a mixtape for a girl who's never going to listen to it. Putting loads of his favourite music on it, regardless of her tastes. He loves 19th century fiction so he's put it on. Most are disinterested.
    Shakespeare never really grabbed me at school and I'm not a huge fan now. Different strokes for different folks. I found deciphering it hindered my connection to it. Loads of people love it, though. Let's not pretend you're stupid if you don't like it.

    2) We haven't had coursework for years. It's controlled assessments these days. Done in class to avoid cheating. Although this system still needs change. Far too much redrafting happens at the moment. But making sure we have proper assessment is hard to do. Exams are easy an cheap to mark. What we really need is a hybrid, where pupils have access to research materials/the internet. It would require proper thinking through and investment, though, if it's going to work in a way that avoids cheating. So that's not going to happen.

    3) We are creating a massive mental health issue by the way we school kids. Every year, the year 7s are crazier and crazier, becuase primary schools are not offering socialisation skills, because they don't have time to. These kids are drilled to hit maths and english targets regardless of anything else. We keep putting them in classes earlier and earlier. And the play and socialisation skills that form the very basis of everything are being more and more eroded to drive up 'standards'. No one even seems to think what this means. We have more kids doing better in more exams. But are they learning more? Are they coming out of school with useful skills? Are they coming out of schools emotionally healthy? All this is important.

    4) The idea of grading by percentiles: We already do this, kinda. Ofqual fudge the figures and grade boundaries so only a certain percentage get a certain grade. It's outrageous, really.


    In terms of the percentage thing: do we really have such fluctuations on a national scale? Considering the amount of students taking the exams every year you'd think that ability levels would stay pretty static.
    'Ability' has almost nothing to do with it. At least not in maths. Every year schools are getting to wiser on how to cram. We drill students with every single pervious maths paper before they go in to the exam. We find new ways to help students. Every year we have to work harder becuase if there's a drop in results, we're going to get driven into the wall by senior management. Every year results go up becuase we have to make them go up.
  • Bremenacht 30 Jun 2013 23:08:45 19,663 posts
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    RichieTenenbaum wrote:
    3) We are creating a massive mental health issue by the way we school kids. Every year, the year 7s are crazier and crazier, becuase primary schools are not offering socialisation skills, because they don't have time to. These kids are drilled to hit maths and english targets regardless of anything else. We keep putting them in classes earlier and earlier. And the play and socialisation skills that form the very basis of everything are being more and more eroded to drive up 'standards'. No one even seems to think what this means. We have more kids doing better in more exams. But are they learning more? Are they coming out of school with useful skills? Are they coming out of schools emotionally healthy? All this is important.
    I agree. Also, the division between those who are likely to do reasonably well and those who won't seems to be more strongly defined than ever.
  • RichieTenenbaum 1 Jul 2013 00:36:56 2,226 posts
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    Well also I think Ken Robinson has said something really true.

    The old story go to school - do well - get good grades - get good job just isn't true any more. And kids don't believe it. They know that even if they do well and get a degree they'll still be unemployed.
  • Moot_Point 5 Jul 2013 15:23:04 4,607 posts
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    This is incredulous! MP's should get a pay rise or we will have another expenses scandal. Article. How about this, why don't they "Tighten their belts" because we are all in the financial situation "together".

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    mowgli wrote: I thought the 1 married the .2 and founded Islam?

  • mcmonkeyplc 5 Jul 2013 15:28:55 39,567 posts
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    I agree with the article.


    /RUNS

    Come and get it cumslingers!

  • Moot_Point 5 Jul 2013 15:31:16 4,607 posts
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    \0/

    /shakes fist!!!1!

    :D

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    mowgli wrote: I thought the 1 married the .2 and founded Islam?

  • Dougs 5 Jul 2013 15:35:44 69,498 posts
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    The idea of increasing an MPs salary by that much at a time when public servants have either had pay freezes or caps, on top of pension increases, makes me rather quite irked.
  • TheSaint 5 Jul 2013 15:39:51 14,827 posts
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    I'd give them the pay rise but ban them from doing any work on the side.
  • Moot_Point 5 Jul 2013 15:40:48 4,607 posts
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    I am thinking hypocrisy has reached new heights.

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    mowgli wrote: I thought the 1 married the .2 and founded Islam?

  • President_Weasel 5 Jul 2013 15:47:00 9,657 posts
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    Moot_Point wrote:
    This is incredulous! MP's should get a pay rise or we will have another expenses scandal. Article. How about this, why don't they "Tighten their belts" because we are all in the financial situation "together".
    How about if they think they're so fucking amazing they go get a job in the private sector for what they're "worth"?
    How about, in order to deter them from stealing from the public, instead of paying them a massive increase on the already 2-and-a-bit times the average wage in this country they're getting, we beef up the regulator and then when we catch them fiddling we send the crooked fuckers to jail?

    Cheaper, and far more satisfying too.
  • mcmonkeyplc 5 Jul 2013 15:53:42 39,567 posts
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    TheSaint wrote:
    I'd give them the pay rise but ban them from doing any work on the side.
    This.

    Come and get it cumslingers!

  • Moot_Point 5 Jul 2013 15:55:16 4,607 posts
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    @President_Weasel Oh I totally agree. I do wonder how much of this bullshit we will have endure before the people in this country say "ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!".

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    mowgli wrote: I thought the 1 married the .2 and founded Islam?

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