Dear Parents/Carers and Students,
We hope you are keeping well during this period of social distancing and self-isolation. Please find attached a summary of the latest advice, published by the Department for Education regarding GCSE and A-Level grading this year.
For further and more detailed information please visit the GOV.UK website:
We are writing to give you further information on the awarding of Centre Assessed Grades at Prospect School. We appreciate that you will want as much information as possible on the process by which we will be formulating these grades, which will be submitted to the Exam Boards for them to work on. Please note that, currently this process applies to GCSEs and A-level qualifications only. Ofqual are still working with awarding bodies to finalise a list of vocational, technical and other qualifications (for example BTECs and Cambridge Nationals) which will be eligible for this same process. Although this is not confirmed yet, Ofqual has stated that, as far as possible, such qualifications should be treated in the same way as GCSEs and A-levels. Please see the website above for more information.
We appreciate the sensitivity of this situation and understand that many of you will feel anxious at this time. We would like to reassure you that much of the process outlined below is already standard practice for our academic monitoring throughout the year and our teachers are used to predicting grades regularly as part of our assessment and reporting procedures.
Importantly, we must remind you, as set out in the Ofqual guidance, that we are not at liberty to discuss the Centre Assessed Grades with students or their families.
In short, we are required to provide a Centre Assessed Grade for every student in all courses and then to rank students within each grade bracket. Our guiding principle is that staff must use their professionalism and integrity throughout the process to provide grades for students that are as accurate as possible using all available information. There is no change here from the way we go about our predictions on a regular basis, so we are asking for the same application of professional judgement.
In order to provide each student with a Centre Assessed Grade and a rank within that grade boundary, staff will consider a range of things such as: classwork and homework; results in assessments; any non-exam assessment or coursework; and general progress during the three year course. Please note, student will not be asked to complete any additional assessments or finish any outstanding coursework. (We do, however request that Year 11 students complete the pre-study tasks in the subjects that they plan to follow from September 2020. More information on these tasks are on our website)
Class teachers will be the first to complete the process, after which our subject leaders (Heads of Department) will collate, review and moderate the data. Finally, our senior leaders will have access to the whole cohort results and will consider this data in the context of students’ prior attainment. We may request more information from the subject leaders, if deemed necessary. At all stages, the focus will be on integrity and professionalism. It is important to note that the grades we submit to the Exam Boards are not necessarily the grades that will be awarded in July/August. Ofqual is working to devise a methodology to allow standardisation across centres and this may lead to changes in grades from the ones that we originally submitted. These changes are out of our control.
As a School, we pride ourselves on knowing our students extremely well. Any issues that would have normally led to the school applying to exam boards for special consideration, will be factored into decision-making and all teachers are aware of the Exam Access Arrangements, which will also be considered for each applicable student.
The process for appeals is still being worked out by Ofqual. Current information available suggests that, in the event of being dissatisfied with the grade awarded, a candidate will be able to sit the appropriate examination in the Autumn term. We will update you on this as Ofqual releases more guidance. With this in mind however, we strongly encourage all students to ensure that they keep all their work (exercise books, folders, assessments, revision notes and other resources) safe and secure so that they might be used in the future if required.
It is important to reiterate that we, like all schools, are not able to discuss the Centre Assessed Grades with the candidate or any other interested party. We hope that this is all clear. If you do have any questions, please do contact either Mrs McCavish firstname.lastname@example.org Mr Alexander email@example.com by e-mail.
With good wishes,
Mr D Littlemore