Update on how GCSEs, AS and A levels will be awarded this summer
With the Easter break very nearly upon us, I wanted to share an update with you on the summer exam series as, today, Ofqual has announced further information about how GCSEs, AS and A levels will be awarded this summer in England.
For this summer’s awards, schools and colleges are being asked to provide centre assessment grades for their learners. These should be fair, objective and carefully considered judgements of the grades schools and colleges believe their learners would have been most likely to achieve if they had sat their exams, and should take into account the full range of available evidence.
This unprecedented situation calls for an unprecedented approach. We welcome this decision and believe it is the best way to deliver fair results at this challenging time. It’s important that professional teacher judgements are taken into account, that a wide range of evidence is used and that a clear appeals process is in place. Learners who feel that their grades from the summer do not reflect their ability will have the opportunity to take their exams in the autumn series or in summer 2021. If they choose to do this, both grades will stand.
We know that this update will prompt many questions. To help with this, Ofqual has published has a comprehensive series of questions and answers that represent the agreed procedures and arrangements to-date, plus:
Guidance for Heads of Department/Heads of Centres
Guidance for teachers, learners, parents and carers
A letter to learners
In the meantime, if you would like to speak to us directly, you can submit questions through our contact form, or by calling +44 (0)344 463 2535
We remain committed to ensuring that all learners internationally receive a result and a grade. As shared previously, we will award grades to international learners using the same principles as for the UK GCSE and A level qualifications. Following today’s announcements by Ofqual, we are moving forward with further detailed work to confirm how the Ofqual principles announced will be applied to our international qualifications (International GCSEs, International AS Levels and International A Levels). We will continue to engage with our international stakeholders throughout this process, and we will share further details on this as soon as possible.
BTEC and vocational qualifications
We are working urgently with Ofqual, other awarding bodies and the Department for Education to provide you with the information you and your learners need on how BTEC and other vocational qualifications will be assessed and awarded and we will update you as soon as we know more.
We also understand that exam fees are a pressing issue for many of you and some of you have been in touch for further clarity on this. You can find more detail here.
We are all aware these unusual times will bring about quite natural amounts of concern and uncertainty. I know that this sector in particular will be vigilant in looking out for and supporting both their colleagues and learners. Our web pages include wellbeing resources, including mindfulness techniques that can be practiced anywhere and are suitable for tutors, parents and young people. The techniques can help everyone work in calmer and more positive ways.
We want to make sure we are doing everything we can to best support you and your learners at this time. Our webpages are updated daily with news, advice and guidance and free online resource offers to enable learning to continue for the rest of the academic year. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our FE centre support team on 0845 373 0114 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your patience during this unprecedented time. We will continue to keep you updated.
Senior Vice President, BTEC and Apprenticeships