Source: Department for Education

Cancellation of GCSEs, AS and A levels in 2020

Students will, instead, be awarded their qualifications on the ‘calculated grade process’.  Ofqual is working with the exam boards to set out a standardised approach for how this will work.

Pupils who do not feel their calculated grade reflects their performance will have the opportunity to sit an exam, as soon as is reasonably possible after schools and colleges open again.

This is not the same as ‘predicted grades’.  The calculated grade will take into account teachers' assessment of the likely grades as well as other factors such as prior attainment (including mock exams).

NB - Exam boards have experience of using moderated teacher assessment to award grades to a number of students, such as those who fall ill immediately before an exam. Ofqual will draw on this experience when developing the process to be used this year.

Vocational Qualifications

No exams will be taking place in schools and colleges this summer.

There is a very wide range of different vocational and technical qualifications as well as other academic qualifications for which students were expecting to sit exams this summer. These are offered by a large number of awarding organisations, and have differing assessment approaches – in many cases students will already have completed modules or non-exam assessment which could provide evidence to award a grade.

We are encouraging these organisations to show the maximum possible flexibility and pragmatism to ensure students are not disadvantaged. Ofqual is working urgently with the sector to explore options and we will work with them to provide more details shortly.

Impact on University Offers

The grades awarded to students will have equal validity to the grades awarded in other years and should be treated in this way by universities, colleges and employers. There is no reason for the usual admissions cycle to be disrupted.

We welcome the constructive approach taken by the main university representative body, Universities UK, who have said that universities will be flexible and do all they can to support students and ensure they can progress to university.

There is no reason for the usual admissions cycle to be disrupted. Universities should not begin making new unconditional offers and applicants should feel no pressure to accept such offers, as they will be awarded a formal calculated grade for each exam they would have taken.

NB - Unconditional offers mean you have already met the entry requirements, so they will remain open and the place is yours if you want it.

While it cannot be guaranteed in every circumstance, Universities UK has assured us that the majority of universities will show the utmost flexibility to ensure that students who choose to take an exam having disputed their calculated grade are able to begin their course with a delayed start time.

If a student is in this circumstance, they should speak to the university from which they have an offer after receiving their calculated grade.