GCSE entries have fallen dramatically across non-EBacc subjects, sparking renewed concerns about a significant narrowing of the curriculum in England.

Statistics published by exams watchdog Ofqual reveal how many students have been entered for GCSEs this summer broken down by subject.
The figures show notable increases in some EBacc subjects and across the board decreases in non-EBacc subjects.

For example, art and design GCSEs fell from 172,550 entries in 2016 to 165,100 this year. Drama is also down from 68,250 to 61,950 and music has fallen from 41,850 to 38,750.

Religious education is also down – from 328,000 to 297,800 – while design technology is down from 175,150 to 156,300. Also hit are subjects such as PE, citizenship and media.

Meanwhile, entries in EBacc subjects are up, most notably in English language (from 459,750 to 701,000) and English literature (371,700 to 551,050). Computing, additional science, chemistry, maths, physics and geography are also up. However, there are notable declines in uptake for French, German and Spanish – perhaps reflecting the recruitment problems across language subjects.

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