Decline in Arts GCSE take up

Recent Ofqual statistics have shown a further decline in the take-up of arts based GCSE’s.

Design and Technology has been hit the hardest, with an 11% decrease in exam entry.

Entries in every arts subject area have fallen by at least 3,000 since last year, and three subjects – Drama; Media, Film and TV Studies; and Art and Design subjects – each decreased by over 6,000 entries. This is in the context of a 165,000 increase in the total number of GCSE exam entries overall.

There has been much debate in the schools’ sector on the impact the EBacc has and will have on GCSE take up of the arts. A recent study by the University of Sussex showed there is a partition amongst the 705 music teachers surveyed that the EBacc has had a negative impact on music teaching, for both GCSE and BTEC subjects.

In 2013, Liz Truss. then Secretary of State for Education said in parliament:

We have no reason to believe there will be an impact on the contribution of creative industries to the economy, which amounts to £36 billion. We will continue to monitor take up of creative subjects at Key Stage 4.

However, the data continues to show a decline in creative arts subjects.

ukadia is concerned with this growing trend and will be undertaking analysis of qualification and HE entry data in due course.

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