But who am I to criticise?
Well, I've been teaching Maths in this country since 2005. I don't think that GCSEs are not "challenging", or that students' hard work is "in vain", or that their grades are "worthless". They're the best measure we have at the moment for determining students' abilities. Students deserve what they get. (Mostly.)
However, the system has numerous faults, many of which I'll outline below. I think we can do much much better. So I'm not going to blindly defend it in the face of change. In fact, I'd love to see GCSEs replaced. Just not by the English Baccalaureate Certificate.
"This consultation sets out the Government’s plans to restore rigour and confidence to our examination system at age 16, which has been undermined by years of continued grade inflation."
In the 1988 Olympics (the year the first students sat GCSEs), 2.9% of the men's 100 metre runners ran (legally) faster than 10 seconds. In the London 2012 Olympics, that figure had increased to a staggering 11.0% - nearly four times the proportion of athletes meeting the same standard!
Does this mean that the men's 100 metre sprint is an easier race than it used to be?