Ofqual have confirmed that the normal appeal process, when exams and marking have taken place, are unable to happen this year as there are no exam scripts to review or mark.

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However, they have:

  • confirmed that a student who had evidence of bias or discrimination would be able to raise this with their centre. An exam board could investigate such evidence as indicating malpractice 
  • decided that, as now, centres must have a procedure which allows students to request that a review is conducted of the centre’s decision not to appeal to an exam board
  • confirmed that appeals should be allowed where a centre believes it has made an error when submitting its information; or similarly, if the centre believes an exam board made a mistake when calculating, assigning or communicating a grade 

Ofqual are investigating whether it is possible to identify from previous years’ national data how, and the extent to which, specific significant changes in the demographic make-up of a centre’s cohort typically affects a centre’s performance relative to previous years. If they are able to identify such a relationship, they will look for a way to enable a centre to make a case that the exam board had not used reliable data when it standardised its centre assessment grades for a subject. Ofqual would need to be assured that the approach was fair to students overall.

Ofqual will aim to make and announce a decision on this possibility before the end of June.

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