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ESC curriculum information was 'smokescreen and misrepresentation', say Grammar teachers

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STAFF at the Grammar School have said that latest information regarding curriculum equality is a 'smokescreen and misrepresentation of the facts'.

The Guernsey Grammar School. (27243365)

Following a request from the Guernsey Press; Education, Sport & Culture released a table showing all the subjects currently being taught in Years 10 and 11 at the four secondary schools.

The table reveals that there is inconsistency in what is being taught across the four sites, and appears to vindicate ESC in pursuing the transformation of schools.

By focusing solely on the GCSE offerings, it shows that this year's Grammar pupils are studying from a timetable of 25 GCSEs, in contrast at Les Beaucamps that figure is 16 GCSEs.

At La Mare de Carteret this year the cohort are studying a total of 17 different GCSEs, and at St Sampson's there are 22 GCSE subjects on offer.

However, that analysis does not include all the BTecs and Vcert qualifications.

For instance, students at Les Beaucamps are the only ones who can get a BTec in home cooking, and students at La Mare de Carteret are the sole ones who can study for a BTec in workskills.

The table and corresponding press release from ESC provoked an immediate response from teachers at the Grammar School.

'While technically the information is correct there are many factors involved in what can be offered and moreover viable in staffing in each school.

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'We are currently in a selective cohort and as such not all subjects will be viable in all schools, why would the Grammar offer BTec science when all the students choose either double award or triple award science GCSE.

'That said, what you have not been told by ESC is that there has already been a streamlining of the curriculum effectively from now with all Year 9 students across the four schools having to make choices from a much narrower set of subjects.

'For example, all the Year 9 students (for their GCSE courses starting in September) have to now select at least one of the following subjects: History; Geography; Computer Science; or Triple Award Science.

'This article is another smokescreen and misrepresentation of the facts.'

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The information from ESC shows that GCSEs in Spanish and German can only be studied at the Grammar School.

Music GCSE is only on offer at the Grammar School and St Sampson's.

Psychology GCSE is only taught at the Grammar School, and GCSE business studies is only on offer at the Grammar School and St Sampson's.

Staff at the Grammar school were quick to challenge the information.

They point out that at one stage Les Beaucamps had two teachers who could teach German, which needs to be taught by a specialist.

However those two teachers both left, so German had to be taken off the timetable for that reason.

With the countdown on till next week's States debate, further statements are anticipated from the teachers.

They say they want to counter other 'misuse of information' around the rival three school model.

Helen Bowditch

By Helen Bowditch
News reporter

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