26 Jun 2013

Standards in Higher exams are falling

Responding to allegations that this year’s Higher Maths exam was ‘dumbed down’ Scottish Labour’s Education spokesman Hugh Henry said:

“These are serious allegations and they come on the back of the departure of the senior Higher Maths examination team at the SQA. Concerns were previously expressed to me that the marking regime would be altered to ensure that pass rates didn’t fall and now we have an experienced examiner saying that standards have been significantly lower and the exams have been dumbed down.

“Pupils, employers and universities need to know that standards are being maintained and quality is not being compromised. This is the latest in a series of worrying reports about the Higher Maths exam. Mike Russell needs to explain to MSPs just exactly what is going on and give an assurance that there is no fiddling going on behind the scenes.

“Scottish Labour also believes that the Education Committee should conduct an inquiry when the Scottish Parliament resumes in September when we will have the evidence of exam results. So far Scottish Ministers have been complacent when confronted with these complaints but the concerns of such experienced examiners should not be ignored or swept under the carpet.

“I will be meeting this week with some of the senior examiners to hear at first-hand their concerns.”