I used to believe in standard education. I thought that it was important to get your GCSE’s. They’re a standard qualification that everyone can recognise, and are necessary before you even apply for certain jobs.
And that is true. Partly.
This time last year, I was signed up for Key Skills classes to complete my qualification. I was annoyed. Why should I have to take lessons in numeracy (hello? I’m training to work with numbers here) and communication (I work for a living. I use the phone, I write letters, what more do you need from me?). So, I complained and there was a kerfuffle and they said with copies of my GCSE certificates, I could be exempt from the Key Skills part of the course.
Excellent. My school years were not in vain.
This year, the same thing happened. Signed up for Key Skills, annoyed, complained. But this year, I did not get the exemption from them. My GCSE’s are only valid for exemption for a certain number of years, and that ran out this summer. Despite the fact that I passed my course last year after half an hour of the allotted exam time, despite the fact that I’ve been working in an office for four years, despite the fact that I’m quite clearly not stupid - I need to do key skills this year.
My GCSE’s have expired, after five years. So, what was the point in even taking them?