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Results fiasco: Ofqual ‘extremely sorry’ for creating ‘real anguish and damaging public confidence’



Ofqual has said it’s sorry for creating a results system that caused “real anguish” as it’s confirmed pupils will now be awarded teacher grades.

As reported earlier, the government has confirmed that pupils will be awarded their centre assessment grades, as opposed to Ofqual’s calculated grades, in a major U-turn.

However pupils whose calculated grades are higher will be able to keep those results.

In a statement, Ofqual chair Roger Taylor said: “Our goal has always been to protect the trust that the public rightly has in educational qualifications.

“But we recognise that while the approach we adopted attempted to achieve these goals we also appreciate that it has also caused real anguish and damaged public confidence.

“Expecting schools to submit appeals where grades were incorrect placed a burden on teachers when they need to be preparing for the new term and has created uncertainty and anxiety for students. For all of that, we are extremely sorry.”

He said allowing CAGs would help “remove as much stress and uncertainty for young people as possible – and free up heads and teachers to work towards the important task of getting all schools open in two weeks”.

He added they plan to provide “urgent clarity” on the “path forward” and they are “working with the Department for Education, universities and everyone else affected by this issue”.

 

Statement from Roger Taylor, Chair, Ofqual in full

 

We understand this has been a distressing time for students, who were awarded exam results last week for exams they never took. The pandemic has created circumstances no one could have ever imagined or wished for. We want to now take steps to remove as much stress and uncertainty for young people as possible – and to free up heads and teachers to work towards the important task of getting all schools open in two weeks.

 

After reflection, we have decided that the best way to do this is to award grades on the basis of what teachers submitted. The switch to centre assessment grades will apply to both AS and A levels and to the GCSE results which students will receive later this week.

 

There was no easy solution to the problem of awarding exam results when no exams have taken place. Ofqual was asked by the Secretary of State to develop a system for awarding calculated grades, which maintained standards and ensured that grades were awarded broadly in line with previous years. Our goal has always been to protect the trust that the public rightly has in educational qualifications.

 

But we recognise that while the approach we adopted attempted to achieve these goals we also appreciate that it has also caused real anguish and damaged public confidence. Expecting schools to submit appeals where grades were incorrect placed a burden on teachers when they need to be preparing for the new term and has created uncertainty and anxiety for students. For all of that, we are extremely sorry.

 

We have therefore decided that students be awarded their centre assessment for this summer – that is, the grade their school or college estimated was the grade they would most likely have achieved in their exam – or the moderated grade, whichever is higher.

 

The path forward we now plan to implement will provide urgent clarity. We are already working with the Department for Education, universities and everyone else affected by this issue.



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  1. Well lets put it this way if the aim was to ensure confidence in UK Education, Roger Taylor, Ofqual, DFE, exam boards, IoE and Gavin Williamson did a really good job of messing that up.

    Something was obviously wrong when exam boards refused to publish grade boundaries (public bodies). Then it turned out Ofqual refused assistance from the RSS (people who are academically qualified on algorithms).

    It turns out Ofqual even refused to respond to the father who proved the issue months before it even became an issue, see here
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2020/aug/14/punishment-by-statistics-the-father-who-foresaw-a-level-algorithm-flaws

    There were major mistakes in Ofqual’s algorithms
    Wrong assumptions
    Technical mistakes
    Testing an algorithms performance by giving it last years data and asking it to predict last years results – You do not ever do that! Reason being of the 11 algorithms they then could choose from they picked the one that best predicted last years results which happened to be great at predicting last years results and a total disaster at this years results as it turns out (Amateurs)
    Then there the denials and lack of transparency.

    Roger Taylor has no experience what so ever in this area of algorithms.

    Then there is the UCL IoE political media coverage attack on teacher grades.

    There needs to be sackings of Gavin Williamson, Roger Taylor, Ofqual board, DFE, Exam boards and IoE chiefs and a complete and radical transformation of UK education system.

    Why? because all of the above have done a really good job in treating unfairly disadvantage students whilst rewarding poor performing private school students. The exam boards even knew at least 25% of students were being treated unfairly.

    Congratulations on the grade inflation by the way Ofqual and the biggest crisis in UK education ever!

    However hats off go to the Schools, the Head teachers, Teachers and school staff who knew their students were being treated unfairly, a complete injustice and thought for their students. Teachers are not paid or respected enough by the education industry.

    It is national disgrace that Teachers, students and the public are treated so poorly by Gavin Williamson, DFE, Ofqual, exam boards, IoE chiefs -it is utterly unacceptable.

    I hope in future the closed shop lack of transparency education industry of DFE, Ofqual, IoE, exam boards might learn from this but I doubt it. There needs to be change!