Speculation about Sunak’s A-level shake-up causing uncertainty, says Starmer

Speculation about Sunak’s A-level shake-up causing uncertainty, says Starmer

Rishi Sunak was accused of creating confusion in the education system following reports he plans to establish a new style of British baccalaureate in which pupils would study more subjects after the age of 16.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said the plans for a shake-up of England’s A-level system were another example of the Government offering “uncertainty and no stability”.

The substantial A-level reform would see English and maths become compulsory until the age of 18, while pupils would be required to study a wider array of subjects in post-16 education, newspapers including The Times and Daily Telegraph reported.

The Prime Minister has previously said all pupils in England should study some form of maths up to the age of 18, criticising a “cultural sense that it’s OK to be bad at maths”.

Sir Keir said: “This is speculation and, yet again, we’ve got the Prime Minister introducing uncertainty about what’s going to happen.

“This is a characteristic of this Government: uncertainty and no stability.

“And I think many parents hearing this will be saying, look at the moment we don’t have enough maths teachers in our secondary schools. At the moment many schools are closed or not functioning properly because the roofs might fall in.

“So I think they’d say to the Prime Minister, concentrate on the day job, not on introducing uncertainty.”

A Department for Education spokesman said: “Since 2010 we have made huge progress in driving up school standards and giving young people the best start in life, with record funding for schools and more full-time teachers than ever before.

“We have already taken steps to reform the post-16 qualifications landscape, including reforming technical education and delivering millions of new high-quality apprenticeships.

“Alongside this, we have set out bold plans to ensure that every young person studies some form of maths up to the age of 18 to give them the skills they need to succeed in the jobs of the future”.