Guidance on summer 2020 qualification results for students and parents/guardians.
College and school closures this year have caused immense disruption to the lives of students and educators across the UK.
During this time, the education sector has been pulling together to limit the impact of Covid-19 on students as much as possible. There has been intensive collaboration between government, qualifications regulators, colleges, schools and awarding organisations. This is to ensure the fairest and least damaging approach to results could be implemented this summer.
The approach taken to results this year is in line with Ofqual’s Extraordinary Framework for GCSE’s and vocational and technical type qualifications. This framework allows for pragmatic and feasible alternatives to normal assessments while insisting on safeguards and principles that ensure the fairness and consistency of results for students. It applies UK-wide in line with the joined-up approach regulators have taken to this situation.
In March 2020, prime minister Boris Johnson announced that all GCSEs and A-level exams would be cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic and students would receive “teacher-calculated” grades.
The methodology used to calculate grades for this summer’s 2020 results.
An extensive methodology was applied to the advisory grades submitted to the exam boards in the summer term. This methodology incorporated a number of factors to include:
- Students performance at half termly assessments across the academic year prior to lockdown.
- Book work submitted in the classroom.
- Achievement of in class targets.
- Attendance at classes.
Reasonable adjustments were then applied to students that had access arrangements in place for their exams. Rigorous scrutiny was given to each individual student’s achievement across the year and grades were determined and reviewed in line with our quality standards before being submitted to the relevant awarding bodies for further standardisation.
The submission to the awarding body ranked students’ outcomes and the standardisation carried out by the awarding body then considered the college’s overall performance in previous years.
Vocational and Technical Qualifications
Because vocational and technical qualifications vary widely, the process for awarding qualifications differs across the different courses. In all cases the exam boards and awarding organisations have made arrangements to ensure this year’s results carry the same currency and students can compete on a level playing field for opportunities with students from previous and future years.
Qualifications were split into three categories: those used for progression to further or higher education; qualifications that are used to signal occupational competence; and qualifications with a “mixed” purpose.
- If your qualification is used for progression to further or higher education, you will receive calculated results judged by teachers.
- If your qualification is used to signal occupational competence, you should have had adjustments to assessment made.
- If your qualifications have a mixed purpose, awarding bodies will have considered which of the above categories the qualification is most closely aligned with and then either give a calculated result with an adapted assessment potentially being made available where this is not possible, or provide an adapted assessment.
If you are unhappy with your vocational or technical qualification, you can appeal. Because there is a wide range of these qualifications, grounds for appeal may vary.
Regulators and awarding organisations have sought to produce an approach to appeals that is fair while also avoiding the impact on students of long-term delays to results.
Therefore, this summer, appeals will not be considered because of challenges to professional assessment judgments made in centres. They will focus on whether the approved processes for this year have been followed correctly. The only exception to this is that bias and discrimination will also be valid grounds for an appeal in themselves.
This approach also takes account of the fact that, in this situation, there are no sources of more valid evidence on which to award grades in a way that balances fairness for individuals and consistency nationally.
Appeals will be possible after qualifications and grades have been released on either 13th or 20th August.
What’s the first step?
Appeals to Summer 2020 vocational and technical qualification results:
If you believe you have valid grounds for appeal as outlined above, you must first contact the College. Please follow the Fareham College Assessment Policy, appendix 2 Appeals procedure where you will find the form to complete.
If you are unhappy with the outcome following the Assessment Policy, appendix 2 Appeals procedure, you can complain to Ofqual.