Ofqual has accepted Pearson's application to be recognised to offer the new GCSE 9 to 1 qualifications. Confirmation was received on 13 May 2014.
New qualifications in English language, English literature and mathematics will be rolled out from September 2015, subject to accreditation, with the first awards being made in the summer of 2017. Further subjects will follow a year later. The reformed qualifications will have a numbered grading system, from 9 to 1 (with 9 being the highest grade available).
School children must be confident that the qualifications they work so hard to achieve will enable them to go on and succeed in their lives. Change can be disconcerting and the process of replacing GCSE exams needs to be carefully managed. We are committed to working with schools and learners to ensure this period of transition is as smooth as possible for them and that they are getting the necessary support.
We are pleased that this recognition from Ofqual means we will continue to offer GCSEs under the new system. This is confirmation that we can continue our preparations to have the qualifications accredited and give schools the preparation time they'll need to start teaching them.
Mark Anderson, Managing Director of Pearson UK
In 2012, Pearson launched the World Class Qualifications programme, bringing together international assessment and education experts to develop qualifications that will support young people globally to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow. Led by an expert panel and chaired by Sir Michael Barber, Chief Education Advisor at Pearson, a key role of this programme is to feed in to the development of the new GCSE and A level qualifications.
The qualifications we offer must support a bright and successful future for the students that take them. As we work towards these reforms, it is so important to look forward and outward, to understand the best practices from the leading nations in education, the changing demands of the global economy and the priorities of higher education and employers. Only then can we be sure that we are giving our students the best possible chance to succeed in whatever path they choose to follow after education.