Ahh, the sweet smell of academic success! Dad – who was from the first generation in his family to go to university – and mum – who left school at 15 – have raised five children to adulthood and all of us are graduates. We must be EBacc’d to the hilt. No?
If my siblings and I were a school, what would our EBacc stats be like? Well we’d do better than the nation – which only achieved a 16% EBacc pass rate at the first time of asking. One of the five siblings managed to pull it off. So we have a 20% success rate. Not bad.
I wonder if Mr Gove thinks that’s good enough though? He doesn’t seem to have set a firm target for EBacc attainment. But it seems likely that it will quite quickly become linked to the ‘floor’ target (35% rising to 50% by 2015) for GCSEs. After all, schools won’t want to risk the accusation that they achieved the floor target through Mickey Mouse ‘non-academic’ qualifications, will they?
Mercifully, some dodgy universities took pity on the four of us with impoverished qualifications and let us in despite our shoddy, slacker attitude of only wanting to study subjects that we found fun and interesting.
Our EBacc-qualified sibling made it into a ‘top 10’ university. Half of the rest of us made it into a ‘top 25’ university. The other two (*coughs*) languished in the top 5*.
None of this personal stuff is in any way significant or relevant to anything, of course. But on the other hand “it worked for me” seems to be Mr Gove’s evidence base, so – you never know – maybe I’ll be Ed Sec one day and I’ll make you all study the stuff I thought was fun. Ha!
*2012 rankings (http://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/league-tables/rankings) Non-academic slacker that I am, I can’t be bothered to find out where each of the universities in question ranked in the years that each of us was admitted.
PS: Devastated and insecure about my non-academic background, I married a man with 15 (count ’em!) O’ & A/O’levels. Despite his scattergun brainiac tendencies he didn’t manage to accidentally get an EBacc either. And he’s old enough to pre-date the invention of the current plethora of ‘subjects-that-aren’t-really-smart-enough-to-count-in-Gove-world’. I’m not even sure how it is technically possible for him to have avoided an EBacc. But there ya go. What could I possibly know?