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I would laugh if I weren't so cross...

Discussion in 'Modern foreign languages' started by shedboy, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. Like many of you, I teach some humanities as well as MFL.
    If you want to be further disillusioned with the marking and management of MFL, go to the RE forum and read the thread of teachers raving about the success of their pupils.
    The following comment struck me as being particularly salient...
    "My son got 15 GCSES - 13 at A*/A grades, C and D in his languages. Very happy and proud mum "


     
  2. I wonder if he was able to resit his other subjects until he got the best grade possible as they do in our place for Geography RE English Science and it seems that History is also on the bandwagon in our place.

     
  3. it is so depressing isn't it. On our school website there is a list of outstanding results - pupils gaining all A*s and 1 A - oh and guess which subject the A is in!!!!
     
  4. I am "gobsmacked" by the percentages of A*-C given in RE - even by those who say mixed ability and inner city comp!
    Stunned - surely, there can be no comparison to MFL exams?
    Every year we come out as the "poor relative" with lower grades than other academic subjects and then we get threads like the one about Edexcel and awarding of marks.
    And then what happens? The teaching of MFL is criticised (a woman was doing it on Jeremy Vine last week); yet, it seems, having read the MFL forum over the years and looking at the resources on TES, that we are always trying to make our lessons innovative, creative, imaginative, interesting - you name it we've done it because we know what a huge mountain we have to climb to interest and motivate students and parents (and SLT) with preconceived ideas of MFL and how "I never enjoyed German at school" or "I always found French hard" is the quote every bloody parents' evening.
    It would be nice for once if we could all walk in on the first day of term with our heads held high knowing that the good job we have done and the amount of work the students have done, is rewarded with the grades that they should be getting.
    *dismounts from high horse*
     
  5. sam enerve

    sam enerve New commenter

    ...or it could be that all RE teachers are amazing. After all, they have God on their side...
     
  6. Some people are never satisfied. Have a look over on the Maths forum. They have a different problem namely the grade boundaries were too low. They are worried that they will have too many students for AS.
     
  7. This is quite telling too, from the Maths Forum, these are the percentages needed to get the grades in maths:
    A* 81%
    A 60%
    B 41%
    C 24%
    D 14%
    E 9%
     
  8. 24% for a C????? What do you need for a C in MFL? To me, 24% seems to be ridiculously low, as in Germany, you always need at least 45% to get a 4 (roughly equivalent to a D).
     
  9. This is the equivalent with WJEC GCSE languages


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    mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
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    mso-style-parent:"";
    mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt;
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    mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt;
    mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
    font-size:10.0pt;
    font-family:"Times New Roman";
    mso-ansi-language:#0400;
    mso-fareast-language:#0400;
    mso-bidi-language:#0400;}



    A* 90 - 100%


    A 80 - 89%


    B 70 - 79%


    C 60 - 69%


    D 50 - 59%


    E 40 - 49%


    F 30 - 39%


    G 20 - 29%


    Interesting?

     
  10. ***???????? Does Mr Gove know about this? What are the boundaries of other exam boards like?
     
  11. Ah, but everyone needs a C in maths so awarding Cs to candidates who get 24% is a great way to get schools to go with your board instead of another! Of course that leads to other boards lowering their boundries too and so it goes on...
     
  12. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy New commenter

    That any teachers should be surprised about any of this beats me - and I've only been in the game 4 years!
    I thought it was common knowledge that a) exam boards fiddled the figures, b) schools cheated and c) MFL was the hardest subject in any school curriculum (even given the dumbed-down "topic" rubbish that we're supposed to teach them nowadays.)
    But the problem with MFL is that it's the one subject that needs real, honest, old-fashioned "knowledge" to be able to succeed in. Now, I know they are trying to fudge that too, by fostering a system of "controlled condition" pseudo exams that are a) ridiculously easy to cheat and b) reliant on memorising things rather than knowledge.
    Nonetheless, if the kids don't actually "learn" something, it's fairly easy to spot in MFL.
    Kind regards,
    Jonnty the other Cynic.
     
  13. As an ex (don't ask) head of department I have seen teacher's reduced to tears and compentency measures based on MFL results not being as good as other subject and being berated that students get good results in all their other subjects and disappointing ones in MFL...I did try to explain the difficulty of MFL compared to the other subjects but was told by the Greasy Haired Witch that ran the stats for the school that it was untrue and that it was just as easy to get a C in maths as it was in MFL....why are the grade boundaries different for different subjects? Please tell me I am sitting down and listening carefully....was I right all along then?
     
  14. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    Obviously the Greasy Haired Witch has been through every specification, examiner's report and ums conversion grid in order to justify that statement. Equally obviously, she can prove that all the chief examiners for all subjects get together to ensure that all subjects are equally difficult or easy and that all children are equally able and motivated in all subjects. She will also then be able to explain why the lovable young rascals don't get the same grade in all subjects.
     
  15. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    It really doesn't matter whether he knows about it or not. He has no authority or influence west of the Severn Bridge. Education in Wales is a devolved matter for the Welsh Assembly. Schools in England can use the WJEC if they think they can get an easier exam.
    The posts on this thread simply echo what we've been saying about the difference between the England and Germany on the A level thread.
     
  16. Think you might have been a little confused as to why I posted the WJEC grade boundaries - it wasn't to say they were easier than any other exam board boundaries for MFL exams, it was to compare to the Maths percentages for the equivalent grades. That was waht the "WTTF referenced!
     

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