Monday, 15 June 2015

A little rant about GCSE education...


So, I am just finishing my last two exams and, looking back now, I can honestly say that there are a few things that bug me about education.

1. Multiple teachers

In my school, it is common to find many teachers that come and go. Some will stay for years, some will stay a few months, some will stay for a half term/full term. What is my issue with having multiple teachers is when it comes to GCSE level.

Many teachers have different teaching styles, paces they teach at and the depth they go into. Unfortunately, I find that this is not helpful. When having multiple teachers over 2 years to cover the GCSE course, you find that some will not cover everything in the curriculum, they may claim that 'other teachers taught you it earlier', or you may find that content is skipped as the teachers are changed. This honestly irritates GCSE students to no end. In my opinion, teachers should have to remain with the GCSE students they are given until the end of year 11 or at least until they finish a unit - I will not begin to tell you how frustrating it is to have teachers that leave when you are half way through a unit then have them leave, or have teachers that don't know how other teachers have taught us. I honestly believe that teachers who are willing to stay long term should have the GCSE classes and short-term teachers should have the younger years - it is the only way that GCSE students can have a fair chance of being successful in their exams in my opinion, just like how remaining in one house for a long period of time rather than moving house every 2 years can be better for the child to adjust and settle.

2. Lessons during the exam period

Whilst some schools have early study leave, other schools either have no or a later study leave - this means that the students must remain in school when not in exams until they are on study leave. Whilst some teachers are more than happy to allow students to revise the topics they need to for their next exam, others are not, In my experience, my geography teacher got angry when we asked to revise physics which was an exam straight after the lesson whilst the geography exam wasn't for two weeks. I understand all subjects must be revised, but it is no right or justified at all to prevent students from being able to revise for their next exam, especially when they express their worry, stress and fear for it. Surely it should be easier for all students to be on study leave to to be out of lessons and revise their subjects in other classes or outside? That would be the best way that they could revise with little interference from teachers...

3. The constant high expectations

Yes, I am in the top sets for the subjects (no, I don't understand why), but it irritates me how all the teachers expect us all to become doctors, lawyers or other high paying, high status jobs - I actually want to go into acting or teach drama. When I tell my teachers that, I always feel like I'm letting them down as many don't expect that from me or sound disappointed in me. Why must they always feel that we must all have the same high goals? Not all of us will want to. Not all of us feel called to. Not all of us feel able to. It doesn't help when teachers tell everyone to aim for a C or above and feel as if they must go to sixth form, college or university. Why must we? Not everyone will be able to or will want to. It only makes us more stressed to feel like there is nothing we can do if we fail to meet a C or don't feel able to go to a sixth form or university.

So. That's it! My rant is done! What things irritate you about GCSE education (or education in general)?

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