Secondary School Chair of Governors describes A-Levels as "a national joke"

Girls from Badminton School in Bristol jumping in the air.
The school actually sent this photo out as a PR shot
according to a story in The Guardian
It's A-Level results day today and two things are certain. Photos of pretty female students leaping in the air after getting their results (see the Sexy A-Levels Blog) and right wing journalists claiming the exams get "easier" each year and in particular are a lot easier than when they did them.

These articles all follow the same theme, today Toby Young from the Telegraph wrote a piece describing A-Levels as a "national joke". I got into a bit of an argument with him on Twitter about this which went as follows:

This really seemed to hit a nerve as the next Tweet I got from Toby wasn't very nice:

Owch!! Toby himself shows a remarkable self-insight in his article though:
For those who want to question my motives, you should know that I got two Bs and a C in my A-levels in 1983 (that’s two A*s and an A in today’s money).  So perhaps I’m just bitter and twisted and have a personal stake in doing down the achievements of “the youth”. 
That seems to sum it up and could probably be left there. After all it isn't really news that right wing commentators seem to have a real issue with any suggestion that there might be progress in society and that younger people now might be, well, smarter than they were when they were young.

However Toby Young is now the Chair of Governors of a brand new "Free School" called the West London Free School  In time this school aspires to have a sixth form itself and I think I would have taken a dim view of his comments if I was a student, parent or teacher at the school. In my view the Chair of Governors should be celebrating the success of the school and its students.

Over the past week young people have got a bad press when a few thousand took part in rioting, looting and making silly comments on social networking sites. Today many more tens of thousands of  young people collected results after years of working hard and have been rewarded with places at University.

Shame on Toby Young and all others that rather than celebrating this success seek to undermine it. The only consolation is any self-respecting A-level student is probably too drunk from celebrating or commiserating to notice. But we should all raise a glass tonight to celebrate the hard work and success of the tens of thousands of A-level students! Well done!

Toby Young 5960787244518744212

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