Updated ISC statement: Exam reforms and IGCSEs

Posted on: 04 Apr 2019
Posted by: Barnaby Lenon

The ISC has issued a statement following the publication of Ofqual's blog about the comparability of GCSEs and International GCSEs.

Barnaby Lenon, ISC chairman, said: “Educational quality is the guiding force for every independent school when designing their curriculum and choosing the subject qualifications their pupils sit. These schools are committed to ensuring young people are fully prepared for their next steps in life and their efforts are clearly reflected in the success independent school students go on to achieve post-16.

“Independent schools began opting for IGCSEs many years ago due to their rigour and reliability compared with GCSEs at that time. This happened long before the introduction of the recent reforms, which are still being rolled out.

“Many schools opt for a mixture of GCSEs and IGCSEs, basing each choice on the course content they believe will provide the best education. More than half of exam entries in 2018 were for GCSEs, while IGCSEs - taken by millions of students around the world - accounted for the remainder.

“It is important to remember that students going to university have taken a wide range of qualifications – A-levels, Pre Us, IB, BTECs, GCSEs, IGCSEs and, in great numbers, overseas qualifications – all of which are recognised and well-respected by universities and employers.

“Huge numbers of young people are currently revising for a range of exams, and they should be supported, encouraged and have confidence to continue along the path they are on.”