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Basic Skills: Qualifications

Question for Department for Education

UIN 138862, tabled on 18 January 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what guidance his Department has issued to universities on accepting students unable to obtain functional skills qualifications during the covid-19 lockdown announced in January 2021.

Answered on

22 January 2021

The government is working closely with partners across the education sector, and with higher education (HE) providers, to minimise the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak and the disruption it has caused to young people’s education, including for those who will be applying to university for the 2021/22 academic year.

The joint consultation between Ofqual and the Department for Education on alternative arrangements for the award of vocational and technical qualifications and other general qualifications in 2021 was published on 15 January. It seeks views on the department’s position that functional skills qualification assessments should continue to take place remotely or in line with public health guidelines where possible, and that alternative arrangements should be introduced for those learners who are unable to access assessments.

We are encouraging universities to be flexible when making offers to individual students whose education has been disproportionally and adversely impacted from the COVID-19 outbreak in order to ensure that these students are able to receive fair offers for 2021.

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