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Questions remain over teacher assessment and appeals process

Written by on 25 February 2021

Schools and pupils will be happy to have a plan for this year’s results season.

The disastrous algorithm is ditched, with grades assessed and awarded by teachers.

What does this involve? Well it’s up to schools to decide what evidence they use.

Things like mock exams, essays, coursework are all possibilities. As for the “mini exam” idea, that is optional and would take the form of mini questions set by exam boards.

The government says its approach is all about “fairness and flexibility”, and certainly teachers are glad they’ve been trusted with grading.

But there is a big question about consistency and reliability of grades if every school uses a different system.

Teaching unions aren’t convinced and think ministers have made a “serious error of judgement”.

But one of the biggest problems might lie with the appeals process.

Giving students early sight of their grades could create a chaotic window, leaving universities stuck and unable to confirm offers.

Some fear we could see an excessive over-inflation of results, which would devalue and discredit qualifications.

The appeals details seem unclear.

You’ll never have a year where every student is pleased with every result.

But finding a robust replacement for exams, remains a risky and difficult process.