1. West Country (E)

A-Level results day

The proportion of A-levels awarded top grades has fallen for the second year amid a rise in students taking science and maths, official figures show.

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NUT: 'Continued high achievement of students'

Today’s results demonstrate the continued high achievement of students and the hard work of their teachers, irrespective of shifting goalposts and the many unfounded attempts to discredit the qualification.

It is however likely that in future years, as a result of the decoupling of AS-Levels from A-Levels as well as end to modularity, fewer disadvantaged students will continue in education.

The system should work to the advantage of these students, too, many of whom have considerable potential which should be nurtured.

Having taken youth unemployment over the 1 million mark, failed to protect the Educational Maintenance Allowance and greatly diminished careers advice services, it is hard to see what answers this Government is giving disadvantaged young people.

This lack of strategy is baffling particularly given the policy to increase the participation age in education to 18."

– Andy Woolley, South West Regional Secretary, National Union of Teachers

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