Updated: Apr 16, 2020
Dear Parents and Carers
I hope you and your family are keeping well, under these very unusual circumstances. I am writing to update you on two important matters for Year 11 students; information we have now received from Ofqual, regarding awarding GCSE grades and the Prom.
Following an announcement made by Ofqual today, I would like to clarify the actions that the school will now take. Their over-riding aim is to be fair to all students and to ensure students can progress to sixth form, college, apprenticeships or other training.
How grades will be calculated?
The school has been asked to provide two pieces of information for each of the subjects your son/daughter has been studying...
1. The grade they believe a student is most likely to achieve if teaching, learning and exams had happened as planned.
2. Within each subject, the rank order of students by performance for each grade. This information will be used to standardise judgments – allowing fine tuning of the standard applied across schools and colleges.
These will be based on a range of information including: classwork, homework, mocks exams, controlled assessment. The information provided will be a holistic professional judgement, balancing the different sources of evidence.
I will be working with subject leaders after the Easter break to ensure all the relevant information is moderated before it is finally sent to the exam board by 29 May 2020.
A letter to student from Ofqual providing further detail can be found below, please share this with your child:
I must specifically draw your attention to the question and response from Ofqual below:
“Can I see the grades my school/college submits for me?
No, this information will be confidential. Please do not ask your teachers or anyone else at your school or college to tell you the grades they will be sending to the exam board.”
This is directed by Ofqual and will be the same for every school across the country. Please ensure you follow this guidance and do not contact class teachers for any evidence relating to this, we will not be able to respond to such requests or enter into any correspondence about this.
We will not be setting any additional work for Year 11s over the Easter period, and there is no need for students to continue with any existing GCSE related work, as we now know that there is no requirement to complete any additional assessment for the GCSEs. I know some colleges will be contacting students with regards to transition activities, and we will also look into what else students could usefully be doing to prepare for their next steps in education, employment and training in the Summer term.
I can now confirm that the Year 11 Prom will not be going ahead. Although disappointing, I’m sure this news will not be a surprise to you given the current pandemic, the associated restrictions and the likelihood these will remain in place over a long period of time. Although the planned date of 2 July is still some way off, we do not believe there is any realist prospect of the current restrictions being lifted to an extent that would allow this event to take place. We are also mindful of the expense that could be incurred by parents from making hire bookings and purchases, and the risk of not receiving refunds if cancellation happened at shorter notice.
We want to find a way to say goodbye to Year 11s properly and will look into ways this might be possible once we have clarity on when the current restrictions will be lifted. In the meantime, any Prom tickets that have already been paid for will be fully refunded, our Finance team will be in touch after the Easter break with details of this.
I hope these updates are helpful and that your sons/daughters have a restful Easter break.
Mrs G Badesha