MEI welcomes the announcement in today’s budget of extra funding to encourage the uptake A levels in Mathematics and Further Mathematics, and Core Maths. We also welcome the announcement that there will be additional funding for teacher professional development.
Charlie Stripp, MEI’s Chief Executive, said:
“This new funding has the potential to stimulate further growth in uptake of A level Mathematics and Further Mathematics, and to really boost the uptake of Core Maths. Schools and colleges would like to offer more students the chance to study maths at beyond GCSE level, but lack of funding has meant they have been finding it increasingly difficult to offer AS and A level Further Mathematics, and most were unable to offer Core Maths at all. Whilst A level Mathematics numbers have increased strongly in recent years, AS Mathematics numbers have started to fall, meaning there was a real danger that the total number of students studying maths beyond GCSE level would fall.
Studying maths beyond GCSE level helps to ensure young people are equipped to play a full part as informed citizens in an increasingly data-driven world and opens up exciting opportunities to access high income careers in business, technology, engineering and science. All students who achieve a grade 4 and above in GCSE Maths should study maths post-16, whatever their future aspirations. Core Maths is specifically designed for those students with a grade 4 or higher who do not aspire to a strongly maths-based career. This new funding should ensure it can establish itself as a mainstream qualification, offered by all schools and colleges teaching post-16 students.
The career development grants are also very welcome. Teacher professional development is a key factor in ensuring all young people can access high quality teaching and there has never been a greater need to develop more confident, effective maths teachers.”