THE huge rise in entries for A-level RS over the past
decade is flattening, this year's examination results, announced
last week, suggest. A total of 20,851 students took the
examinations this year, compared with 20,640 in 2012. At AS level -
where students often choose to study the subject for one year only
- entries rose from 30,883 last year to 32,040.
The one-per-cent A-level increase has to be seen
against the near doubling of RS entries over a decade, which
includes a rise of 40 per cent in the past five years. Also, this
year's entries would have been unaffected by the introduction of
the EBacc group of core subjects, from which RS is excluded.
The GCSE results, which were set to be announced
yesterday, are likely to be a clearer indication of how far
Government's education reforms have disadvantaged the subject.
Analysis of the entries by gender indicate that, as
with English, Sociology, and Art and Design, about two-thirds of RS
candidates are female.
RE teacher-training numbers fall.Recruitment to
training places for specialist RE teachers is significantly reduced
in comparison with last year, recent figures suggest. At the
beginning of this month, acceptances for PGCE and school-based
places totalled about 320 - about 150 fewer than last year.
Last-minute acceptances are less likely than in
previous years, because new rules require teacher-training
candidates to pass basic skills tests before beginning their course
rather than during training, as in previous years.