Michael Gove will no doubt be giving himself a large pat on the back today after pushing through reforms to force teenagers to re-sit exams until they pass maths and English GCSEs. This may seem like a good idea, but I'm urging you to look beyond these lazy assumptions. One size does not fit all.
As of this week, students will be forced to remain in education until they are 17 - a whole year after completing their GCSEs, and as of September 2015, the age will be 18. Is this a good idea? The simple answer is: No. Not everyone blossoms at school, and to force those who are desperate to leave and start work is surely detrimental.
With an increasing pressure on jobs and university places, a need for more extracurricular skills above and beyond academic, and the current economic climate, it's no surprise that recent research by us revealed that half of British teenagers worry that they'll be less successful than their parents.
Another week, another round of exam results for Britain's teens. There were fewer photographs of girls jumping in the air, that particular penchant of the UK press seems reserved for A-Level results day only, but the 600,000 picking up their GCSE grades prompted just as many debates about standards and grades.Thousands of miles away, a tragic milestone was passing for another generation of children as the UN marked the millionth child forced to flee Syria and its escalating civil war...
What really gets to me at results time of year is how quick people are to judge those who have achieved well at GCSE and A-Level as academics and those who struggled as 'failures' perhaps 'only destined for an Apprenticeship'.
Results day can be a nerve-wracking experience for many young people. Traditionally, they will queue up at school and face an anxious wait to find out how they've done in their exams before they can think about the next stage in their education.
With the A-level results in and university plans either scrapped or confirmed, the gap year exodus is soon to begin. Many young people will be seeking out character building volunteering projects in third world countries, determined to 'give something back' before years of hard study (and hard partying) take centre stage. But how informed a choice can anyone make about the volunteering trips on offer?
Around 600,000 young people in the UK are on school holidays right now. That means unlimited sunbathing, chilling with mates and dreaming about exciting futures, right? Wrong. In fact, thousands of young people feel hopeless about life after school.
Students around the country have this week received life changing news. A-Level results have become one of the most important moments in a teenager's life, but does the burden piled on by these exams live up to the hype? And do the effects of that pressure on the individual last way after the results have been forgotten?
When I left school, I was doing well academically with B's and C's in all my GCSEs and so I followed everyone else and went to study full time in college. However, after a few months into my BTEC and A-levels I decided full time studying wasn't for me, as I am such a hands on learner I found it difficult to learn in a classroom environment.