Commenting on Ofqual’s announcement (3 April 2020) on its plans for awarding grades to GCSE and A Level students this summer, Voice General Secretary Deborah Lawson said:
“Voice has been in consultation with Ofqual on this issue and is cautiously optimistic about the plans that have been published.
“However, some questions remain unanswered.
“There needs to be clarification on the other exams and assessments that take place each year, such as functional skills, and we are waiting for the Government to respond to the question of exam fee refunds, which is of particular interest in independent schools.
“It is imperative that students should get their grades this summer, and so we are pleased to see that a system using teacher assessment is being adopted.
“Teachers are acutely aware of the abilities of their learners and would have been expected to submit an estimated grade to the exam boards anyway, so this process is a good way of recognising the reliability and accuracy of that teacher assessment.
“Sensibly, schools and colleges have been told not to share their centre assessment grades with students, parents or carers. The integrity of teachers’ and centres’ judgements is vital and they should not feel pressured into issuing inflated grades, as this could also lead to the unfair targeting of teachers by pupils and their parents.
“The moderation and standardisation of the centre grades should help to maintain national standards. These grades must also stand the test of time so that learners are not in any way disadvantaged by the lack of opportunity to complete their course and sit their exams.”
Further information from Ofqual
Direction issued to the Chief Regulator of Ofqual Correspondence, DfE
Voice's Coronavirus information