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17 August 2020

Government and Ofqual announce that students in England will receive teacher assessed grades for GCSE and A level results

Sub-theme: Education

Summary

In its statement the government says the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) had consulted on and implemented a process for exam results 'but the system has resulted in too many inconsistent and unfair outcomes for A and AS level students. Over the last few days, it has become clear that the algorithm has revealed a number of anomalies that had not been anticipated by Ofqual and which severely undermined confidence in the system'. So centre assessment grades will be used, which 'was deemed to be the fairest approach to avoid some students receiving grades that did not reflect their prior performance'. If students’ calculated grades were higher than the centre assessment grade, the calculated grade will stand. The government 'intends to remove' temporary student number controls introduced for the coming academic year. The Universities Minister, Michelle Donelan, will lead a new task force 'to ensure students can progress to the next stage of their education'.

In its statement, Ofqual says that it wants to 'remove as much stress and uncertainty for young people as possible' and therefore has decided to award grades on the basis on what teachers submitted. This switch will apply to both AS and A level and GCSE results. It says that the system it developed for awarding calculated grades aimed to maintain standards and ensure grades awarded were in line with previous years. However, it also recognises that the approach taken caused 'real anguish and damaged public confidence'. The appeals process would also have placed a burden on schools at a time when they needed to be preparing for the new term.

Source(s)

Gov.uk news story

Gov.uk news story – Ofqual statement