§ 25. Mr. Christopher Ward
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is his estimate of the numbers of school-leavers with two or more General Certificate of Education A levels in 1970, 1975 and 1980; what is his estimate of the proportion of the age group obtaining these qualifications; and how these estimates compare with those made in the Robbins Report on Higher Education.
§ Mr. Edward Short
As the answer contains a number of figures, I will with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.
§ Mr. Short
The hon. Gentleman is right in his reference to an increase. This is one of the results of reorganising our secondary schools. For example, for 1980 the Robbins estimate was 12.1 per cent. of the age group attaining two or more A levels, and it now looks as though the proportion will be 20.2 per cent. This is a direct result of reorganising our schools. The Labour Government in the middle of the 1970s will provide places for all of them.
Mr. R. C. Mitchell
Does my right hon. Friend expect the G.C.E. A level to be in existence in 1975, in the light of recent reports?
§ Mr. van Straubenzee
Before the Secretary of State waxes too glibe in taking the credit, would it not be as well to recall that this is the result of the work of the teaching profession? When does he expect to receive replies to his circular to the universities designed to deal with the situation raised in my hon. Friend's Question?
§ Mr. Short
The party opposite has had a lot of bad news, what with the trade figures and the announcements which I have made. Of course, it is the result of the work of the teachers in the reorganised secondary schools. On the second point, perhaps the hon. Gentleman will give the facts correctly. He knows that the circular was not a Government circular; it was drawn up and sent out by the vice-chancellors themselves, not by me.
§ Following is the information:
|ESTIMATED NUMBERS OF SCHOOL LEAVERS OBTAINING TWO OR MORE GCE "A" LEVEL PASSES|
|Thousands||Percentage of age group|
§ Source: Statistics of Education, 1968, Volume 2 to be published.
|Rabbins Report Estimates|
§ Source: Robbins Report, Appendix One, Part IV; Tables 5 and 6.