James Croft, author of our superb report on profit-making free schools, is now head honcho of the Centre for Market Reform of Education, and has today released a paper that raises serious questions about the government's plans to replace GCSEs. The recommendations are refreshingly innovative, harnessing the innovative properties of the market to try to solve some of the problems that the government's plans are aimed at addressing:

Michael Gove is one of those reforming politicians who galvanises support by polarising opinion. In the media frenzy surrounding the announcement of the government’s reforms to Key Stage 4 (KS4) qualifications yesterday, it is unsurprising that there wasn’t much place for intelligent comment offering qualified support to his proposals. While recognising the concerns that the Minister seeks to address, there are good reasons why even those who share his concerns about the utility of GCSEs, and what should be done with the curriculum to address them, should feel some unease about his proposals. Fortunately, there is a market-based solution that fits squarely within the Coalition parameters, which would be feasible if the Conservatives were to be more conservative and the Liberal Democrats more liberal. […]

You can read the rest of this blog post on The Centre for Market Reform of Education website.

When Qualifications Fail: Reforming 14-19 Assessment, the Centre’s first discussion paper, by James Croft and Anton Howes, is published today.