Consultation on proposed changes to the assessment of GCSEs, AS and Alevels in 2021


OfQUAL has opened up a consultation on proposed changes to the assessment of GCSEs, AS and A levels in 2021 and has put forward proposals to modify the assessment requirements for some GCSEs, AS and A levels in response to disruption to education caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. CLOSING DATE IS 16TH JULY (

I feel sure that colleagues will approve of the  the proposed reductions in the requirements in GCSE Music and AS an A Level Music and Music Technology. However it should be noted  that there is NO reduction in content for the EBACC subjects and there may be concern that schools could decide to increase curriculum time to these subjects to ensure that the content is covered. Further, schools may choose to withdraw their students from performing arts subjects as another way of ensuring that content in the EBACC curriculum is covered.

Members of this forum may wish  to make individual responses direct to the Ofqual consultation and to elect to answer questions on all subjects. Members should make their own decision to comment or not on whether there should be changes to the curriculum content of EBACC subjects. This could be a back door way for Heads to increase catch up time for the EBACC. See what I am saying?

Published by askrichardarts

Recently retired (September 2019) after a 42 year career in Music and Arts Education I am an experienced arts educator specialising in school leadership and all aspects of arts education but with particular expertise in music and music education. From 2011 - 2019 I was Music and Arts Strategy Manager in South Gloucestershire leading the South Gloucestershire Music Hub, Arts Council England’s preferred provider of Music Hub activities in South Gloucestershire. Always regarded as a minor risk organisation it provided teaching and ensemble activities to over 4000 children a week and many ensembles achieved national recognition at the Music for Youth Proms and National Festival. From 2005 to 2011 I was National Specialist Coordinator for Performing Arts and Music at the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust effectively a national adviser on arts education contributing to many national initiatives e.g. Music Manifesto, Musical Futures, Henley Review of Music Education, and Building Schools for the Future. I also provided curriculum support and professional development to over 600 schools in England and in 2010 gave a keynote speech on Music Education in the UK at Gifu University in Japan. The bulk of my teaching career was at Richmond School in North Yorkshire where I led a highly successful Music Department with over 300 students a week learning musical instruments and large classes at GCSE and A level. I commissioned a number of works for School Wind Band by composers such as Bill Connor, Adam Gorb and Philip Wilby and developed UK and Worldwide commissioning networks to commission works by Christopher Marshall and Marco Putz. As an adjudicator I have worked throughout the UK, in the Netherlands, Australia and the USA and Canada. In retirement I am a Trustee of the Music Education Council ,Independent Chair of the Music Hubs in Somerset and Torbay , and a doctoral student at the University of the West of England.

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