NAHT criticises Ebacc in wake of GCSE results

The National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) has criticised the government’s focus on the English Baccalaureate (Ebacc), claiming it is ‘narrowing the curriculum’.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the NAHT, raised concerns that entry into design and technology was down 10 per cent, while art and design dropped six per cent, music five per cent and drama four per cent.

The government’s recent education policy has focused heavily on the Ebacc, a performance measure that requires pupils to study english, mathematics, history or geography, the sciences and a language.

According to Hobby, this ‘too strong a focus’ on the Ebacc is limiting students at key stage 4, which in turn limits their choices at A-level. Hobby has urged the government to reconsider its aim that 90 per cent of students must be entered for the Ebacc, unless they are willing to include wider range of subjects within it.

Responding to the sharp decline in GCSE results, which saw the the proportion of A*-C grades drop 2.1 per cent compared to last year, Hobby was dismissive and suggested it was ‘mainly a result of new requirements leading to a significant increase in post 16 entries’.

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