Schools to decide students’ exam grades

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Schools are to be asked to assess their students.

SCHOOLS are to be asked to assess pupils’ grades to decide what their exam results should be this summer.

Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation, has laid out procedures for determining grades at A-level, AS-level and GCSE.

The government website gov.uk argues the process “fairly recognises students’ work and makes sure they get their grades in time to progress”.

Schools and colleges are being asked to provide their own assessment grades for individual students, which should be “fair, objective and carefully considered judgements” of the grades teachers believe their students would have achieved if they had sat the exams in the next few months.

Ofqual’s chief regulator Sally Collier said: “School or college based assessment already has an important role in many GCSEs, AS and A levels and in extraordinary circumstances such as these, schools and colleges are best placed to judge the likely performance of their students at the end of the course.

“We have worked closely with the teaching profession to ensure that what we are asking is both appropriate and manageable, so that everyone can have confidence in the approach.”

Exam boards will be in touch with schools and colleges to ask for the assessment grades, which will take into account evidence such as classwork, bookwork, non-exam assessments, mocks and any previous results.

Controversially, schools will also be asked to rank their students in terms of attainment. Ofqual argues this will be used to apply a system standardisation across different exam centres.

Results are expected to be published at the usual time in August, if not before.

Home-schooled and independent students could be included by the exam centres where they were due to sit their exams, but some may be forced to delay taking their exams until the autumn or even next summer.