Essay Example on General Education Survey of 1982

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General Survey As of 1982 some 83 of secondary school students were in comprehensive secondary schools 5 6 in secondary modern schools 3 3 in secondary grammar schools and 1 1 in technical institutions the other 7 of secondary school students were in private schools Ten years earlier only 39 4 were in comprehensive secondary schools At the upper end of the secondary school 16 and 17 year old the private school share of the enrollment rises to 17 this is partly because the high dropout rate at age 16 affects mainly the maintained schools both public and church-related A recent development among the maintained schools is the creation of a separate school for the last two years called sixth form of secondary school this new type of school is often called a sixth form college and caters to 16 to 19 year old There are slightly more than 100 of these sixth form colleges and they enroll 18 of the sixth form students Secondary school enrollments overall have declined in the 1980s and have led to the closing of over 100 secondary schools Curriculum

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During the first four years of a secondary school most students take English mathematics science history and the required course in religion Some will take a foreign language In addition all are encouraged to participate in physical exercise and sports Beginning in the fifth year fifth form the distinctively English emphasis on specialization begins to appear Those planning to go on to a university tend to take most of their subjects in either the math science area or the social science humanities and languages area Called the arts area in England In the sixth form for the 15 of the age group still in school the specialization increases and may amount to spending half or more of their class time on their two or three main subjects Typically these sixth form students also have several free periods per week to spend in the school library working on their subjects of specialization As at the lower level of the school games and physical exercise still are expected of all students As the sixth forms have increased in size by the addition of some less academic students some sixth forms have introduced new subjects with a technical or vocational emphasis Teaching Method Methods of teaching in the secondary schools are for the most part traditional and teacher directed is the term often used There is not much emphasis on student participation in secondary school classes Teachers frequently group students by ability

The development of comprehensive schools has meant that the student population represents a much wider range of ability than was found in the secondary grammar schools and there has been a corresponding increase in interest in the teaching method Some of the comprehensive secondary schools have established remedial learning departments In most schools one or two hours of homework per night are expected Discipline Corporal punishment such as whipping still is used in some schools in England A minority of teachers have organized to oppose this and have pressured LEAs to prohibit such punishment At the same time there has been an upsurge of assaults on teachers by students in the 1980s in response teacher s organizations have joined the general clamor that schools be stricter with students and some LEAS have established discipline centers for unruly students The matter is complicated by the presence of growing numbers of ethnic minority students and because West Indian students are being assigned to the discipline centers in disproportionately large numbers Examinations Diplomas

There is no secondary school diploma as such in England Instead the majority of young people at age 16 leave school without any certificate for diploma At age 16 20 of the students take either the GCE examination in individual subjects or the CSE examination these exams and the examination boards were described in the overview section of this chapter It is worth repeating here that essay type questions are preferred not only in the external examinations but also in every teacher s normal internal assessment during the school year There are sex differences on the external exams in 1982 for example four times more boys than girls took GCE O level exams in physics Similarly two times more boys took O level exams in chemistry In 1982 for the first time girls outnumbered boys in total enrollment in courses preparing for the GCE A level examinations 131 700 girls to 130 600 boys Schools offering training in vocational skills are in the separate further education system and certificates are given when one has mastered a particular skill to a specified level Teachers Teacher Pupil Ratios The teacher pupil ratio for all maintained secondary schools in January 1982 was 1 16 In the upper years of secondary school 16 year old and older the average class size is about 11 students 



In 1982 there were the full time equivalents of 228 400 teachers in the maintained secondary schools Vocational Education While there are some vocational courses in the regular secondary schools comprehensive schools vocational education occurs mainly in the separate further education system The schools here are called either colleges of further education or technical colleges They offer secondary education to persons 16 years and older and they charge tuition Training for various trades is offered including the building trades automobile repair and printing Some academic courses are offered to a minority of the students who wish to prepare for GCE O level or A level examinations Many of the students taking the vocational courses are employed by factories and firms and are given day release several hours each week to attend classes in the colleges of further education which also have full time students There were 313 000 part time students and 573 000 full time students in 1982 Some of the factories or firms pay the tuition costs of their workers on day release


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