• Comparable outcomes won't help all pupils in 2021, admits Ofqual

    Applying comparable outcomes to exam results in 2021 will not be enough to compensate for learning loss for all pupils, Ofqual has said, admitting it would only be a “partial compensation strategy”. The exams regulator has published research today on maintaining standards and the so-called “sawtooth effect” – which describes when outcomes dip following changes

    11.32 Nov. 23rd, 2020 | News

  • 'We'll help kids rise to the challenge' - heads contradict Ofsted chief on exams

    Cancelling exams in 2021 will not result in pupils becoming disengaged, headteachers have told MPs, as they vowed to work with “whatever system” they are presented with. Six school leaders appeared in front of the Parliamentary education committee this morning to give evidence on left-behind white disadvantaged pupils. Whatever system you give us, we will

    13.18 Nov. 17th, 2020 | News

  • Restricting exams to core subjects 'under consideration', suggests Spielman

    Ofqual is considering whether to only have exams in core subjects next year, with centre-assessment grades used for the remainder, Amanda Spielman has suggested. The Ofsted chief inspector, who is chairing Ofqual’s new “recovery committee” formed to oversee the fallout from this year’s exams fiasco, said holding exams only in core subjects was “the kind

    12.59 Nov. 10th, 2020 | News

  • Sir Jon Coles appointed to Ofqual's recovery committee

    The head of one of the country’s largest academy trusts has been appointed to a committee set up to oversee Ofqual’s recovery from the exams fiasco. Sir Jon Coles, chief executive of United Learning, has been announced today as one of the seven people on the regulator’s new “recovery committee” which will also lead on

    11.48 Nov. 10th, 2020 | News

  • National reference test future ‘not in doubt’, says Ofqual

    The exams regulator has restated its commitment to running a national reference test, despite delaying a decision over the test’s future following “unexpected results”. Piloted in 2016, the tests in maths and English involve a sample of year 11 pupils each year to monitor, over time, how well cohorts are performing. The results act as

    5.00 Nov. 8th, 2020 | News

  • Revealed: What Ofqual's explosive board minutes tell us about the exams fiasco

    The ill-fated exams “triple lock” policy that sparked a chain of events culminating in pupils instead being awarded their centre-assessed grades was announced before Ofqual had been able to even sign it off. The exams regulator has today published its long-awaited board minutes that give a behind-the-scenes account of this year’s exams fiasco. They also

    12.20 Oct. 22nd, 2020 | News

  • Williamson's education committee exams hearing: 5 things we learned

    The education secretary faced questions about this year’s exams fiasco and the reopening of schools when he appeared in front of the Parliamentary education committee this morning. Gavin Williamson’s appearance in front of MPs follows a hearing last week with leaders from exams regulator Ofqual. Here’s what we learned from him.   1. DfE looking

    13.16 Sep. 16th, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual accused of 'scapegoating' heads' union over deflated grades fall-out

    Ofqual has been accused of trying to “scapegoat” a headteachers’ union amid the fall-out over deflated grades. The regulator has been facing challenges to offer an appeal route for schools that followed advice to mark down their own teacher grades in line with historical results. Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and

    15.42 Sep. 15th, 2020 | News

  • Exam board ‘proposed algorithm – then raised concerns about it’

    An exam board which revealed that it warned ministers of flaws with the ill-fated algorithm had actually proposed the approach adopted by the regulator in the first place. Cambridge Assessment, which runs exam board OCR, had originally submitted the direct centre performance (DCP) model that was chosen and then developed by Ofqual as its algorithm

    7.00 Sep. 13th, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual cancels £80k media recovery plan

    Ofqual has abandoned plans to spend £80,000 on media strategists to lead its “recovery plan” following the exams fiasco. The exams regulator had run a tender to recruit a “senior press office service to provide media advice and strategy”. The contract for the 15-week project, worth up to £80,000, was due to start this week.

    19.00 Sep. 11th, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual to face grilling by MPs over exams fiasco

    Leaders from exams regulator Ofqual will appear in front of MPs next week to answer questions about this year’s A-levels and GCSEs fiasco – but outgoing boss Sally Collier will not be with them. Gavin Williamson, the education secretary, will also “likely” face questions about the government’s handling of the crisis when he appears in

    14.08 Aug. 28th, 2020 | News