Re: Year 10 GCSE statistics and other external exams
The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual), commonly known as the exam ‘watchdog’, announced earlier this week that Year 10 pupils who are entered for GCSE exams this summer will indeed be awarded grades. This means that pupils who are entered for GCSE statistics will receive a final grade for this qualification on GCSE results day in August 2020, despite the summer exams being cancelled. We believe this is great news and the right decision for our pupils. Ofqual have asked schools to provide exam boards with the grade that they believe pupils were most likely to get if teaching, learning and exams had happened as planned. Exam boards will then moderate these grades to ensure consistent standards across schools. Further details about the grading process are explained in a letter to pupils from Ofqual. Please click on the link below and read this letter carefully.
Please be reassured that Ofqual, the exam boards and Hardenhuish School are all committed to ensuring that the process of awarding grades this summer is fair to all pupils who were entered for GCSE Statistics. I would like to emphasise a number of key points from Ofqual’s guidance:
- Teachers know their pupils well and will use a range of information to make sure the grade that is submitted to the exam board reflects the most likely grade a pupil would have achieved if the exams had not been cancelled.
- The final grade awarded by the exam boards will not necessarily be the same as the expected grade on a pupil’s latest progress report. This is because the school is following a different procedure of internal standardisation and it is the exam boards who will ultimately decide on the final grade awarded to pupils.
- Schools are not required to set additional assessments or homework to help decide on the grades submitted to the exam board. Furthermore, pupils will not be disadvantaged if they were unable to complete all of the work given out by their statistics teacher during the period of school closure.
It is important to also stress from Ofqual’s letter that schools have been instructed that the grades submitted to the exam boards are confidential. Therefore, please don’t ask teachers or anyone else at school to tell you the grades they will send to the exam boards as they will not be allowed to share this information with you.
As a result of this decision, pupils in Year 10 will no longer be set work for statistics or 5TEAM maths lessons to complete during the period of school closure. Therefore, we would like pupils to prioritise completing the work set in their normal maths lessons to the best of their ability.
Some pupils may also have been entered for exams in other subjects such as hospitality and catering, iMedia and sports studies. These courses are slightly different to GCSE statistics because pupils will not finish these courses until the end of Year 11. While it is clear that these exams have been cancelled this summer, we are still waiting for clarification from Ofqual about whether pupils will receive a mark for these exams, that can then count towards their overall grade, or if they will be expected to sit the exam during Year 11. Given that pupils are only part way through these courses, we expect them to complete the work which will continue to be set.
I hope this helps to explain the situation. I would be grateful if you could discuss the contents of this letter with your child who has been sent an e-mail with the same information. Please contact Dr Bassford (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions.