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Assessments

Question for Department for Education

UIN 45217, tabled on 8 September 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps is he taking to ensure Ofqual publish final details of adjustments to the 2022 exam series as soon as possible.

Answered on

17 September 2021

It is the Government’s firm intention that exams and assessments should go ahead in 2022. The Department recognises that those students taking exams in 2022 have had considerable disruption to their education. On 12 July, together with Ofqual, a joint consultation was published, seeking views on the proposed changes to GCSE, AS and A level exams in summer 2022 in light of the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on students entering these qualifications: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/proposed-changes-to-the-assessment-of-gcses-as-and-a-levels-in-2022. The consultation closed on 1 August. The Department plans to announce final decisions on the changes to GCSE and A/AS level exams in summer 2022 early in the autumn term. Arrangements for VTQs were announced on 6 August: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/arrangements-for-the-assessment-and-awarding-of-vocational-technical-and-other-general-qualifications-2021-to-2022.

In deciding on an approach to grading next year, the Department will be asking Ofqual to be as fair as possible to students taking qualifications next summer and to those who took them in previous years or will take them in the future. We recognise the need to give certainty to students, teachers and organisations that rely on qualifications as soon as possible, and Ofqual will be giving a clear indication of that grading system in October.

Whilst the Department remains firmly committed to exams going ahead in 2022, we are also working with Ofqual, the exam boards and stakeholders on contingency plans in the unlikely event that this does not prove possible. We will consult on the details in the autumn term.