Last updated: 26.05.11

UK is 'lagging behind in English and maths'

The UK is falling behind its European rivals in delivering high standards of education in English and maths to its young people, it has been claimed.

Nick Seaton, secretary for the Campaign for Real Education, said the country is falling behind its competitors in terms of delivering young people who have the qualifications to excel in the workplace.

He commented: "I think that compelling them to retake GCSE English if they haven't got a good grade makes sense and will benefit the youngsters in the long run."

Mr Seaton added that inspiring children to buck their ideas up when it comes to these core subjects would be a positive step for both the country as a whole and the individual.

Secretary of state for education Michael Gove told members of the house of commons this week, the numbers of students who leave education without proper qualifications in English and Maths is unacceptable at present.

He said this is an issue the coalition is attempting to face head-on by implementing new rules which will ensure 16 to 18-year-olds who were unable to secure at least a C in English and maths at GCSE will continue to study those subjects through to age 19.