Guidance on teacher-assessed grades issued by ASCL

Following the decision that no exams will take place during this summer, the ASCL has published guidance on how to address the process of assigning grades to pupils.

The government has determined that schools and colleges will not be held to account for their performance based on this summer’s teacher-assessed grades. But schools must consider certain factors when approaching this exercise.

The ASCL says "It is entirely about ensuring the students receive reasonable grades so that their own lives are as unaffected as possible. It is not about school ranking. We would expect that the national picture for teacher-assessed grades will be broadly similar to that which would have occurred if the students concerned had actually taken their exams. It is understandable that teachers might want to give more students the benefit of the doubt by, for example, awarding more grade 4s than they might other wise have obtained. But this would be wrong for several reasons."

The ASCL warns that awarding organisations and Ofqual will take steps to ensure that grade distributions resemble previous years. Where centres produce grades which seem particularly generous, a moderation process will be applied.

Assuming that things head back to normal for the 2021 cohort, an inflated picture in 2020 would disadvantage those students currently in Year 10 and Year 12. They have enough to contend with having had their own studies disrupted.

This is an opportunity for the profession as a whole to show that it can, and will, produce reasonable grades through the process of teacher assessment. For those who believe that the current system of examinations at 16 is inappropriate there is a chance here to show that an alternative universe is possible.

The full guidance is available here.

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