Petition Ensure all GCSE students are issued equation sheets
Considering the amount of pressure and hard work it takes to sit GCSEs, we believe students shouldn't have to spend valuable revision time learning equations. Even for exams in 2024 students affected by COVID are not getting the sheet. We need the sheets for all years from now on.
There are lots of exams that students sit in a range of subjects that all require a lot of learning and memorisation. This workload needs to be considered. We believe spending time learning equations is not a good use of valuable revision time and there needs to be change. These sheets can help young students achieve better grands, and help put their minds more at ease because there is less to worry about, which could help with their mental wellbeing.
This response was given on 14 September 2023
The Department for Education and Ofqual will confirm arrangements for 2024 exams early in the autumn term.
Read the response in full
The intention has always been to return GCSEs and A levels to normal after the pandemic, as the examination and assessment processes are carefully designed and well-established. It is important that we move towards normality as soon as possible, so that students are prepared for college, university or employment, and to help students make well informed choices about their future.
Exams are the best and fairest way of assessing what students know and can do and that is why it is so important that we return to pre-pandemic arrangements.
Students taking exams in 2023 in England were provided with formulae and equation sheets in GCSE maths, combined science and physics. These support materials were also provided in 2022 and we extended this for one further year in 2023 in recognition that students had experienced some previous disruption due to the pandemic.
GCSEs are rigorous qualifications which match the expectations in high performing education jurisdictions and reflect the knowledge and skills pupils need to progress. GCSEs are designed to assess a knowledge-rich curriculum which prioritises knowledge acquisition and the mastery of a body of subject specific context. It is important that students remember the formulae required in the mathematics, science and physics GCSE, so that they fully understand the formulae and equations and can apply them fluently and quickly in exam questions.
Examinations, like many other things in life, are by their very nature, stressful. But when pupils receive the right support, the level of stress from exams is manageable. Schools and colleges should be able to identify signs of exam-related stress whenever it emerges and be in a position to respond appropriately.
We expect to confirm arrangements for GCSEs in 2024 in the autumn.
Department for Education
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