Government’s downgrading of A-Level results a ‘shambles’ – Ruth Cadbury MP

14 August, 2020 / by Matt Smith

Ruth Cadbury MP has called the Government’s downgrading of A-Level results a ‘shambles’ and backed calls by the Leader of the Opposition Keir Starmer for the Government to instead use the teacher assessed grades, rather than the moderated grades from Ofqual.

After exams were cancelled due to the pandemic, grades were awarded using controversial Ofqual modelling system – with the key factors being the ranking order of pupils and the previous exam results of schools and colleges.

This produced more top grades than has ever been seen before in A-levels – almost 28% getting A* and As – but there has been dismay by many students whose grades have been revised down, some by more than two grades.

In England, 36% of entries had grades lower than their teachers predicted and 3% were down two grades.

The Labour Party over the weekend called on the Government to switch away from this system and to use teachers’ predictions, something which the Scottish government U-turned on last week.

‘This is simply unfair’

Speaking in full on Friday 14 August, Ruth said:

‘‘Over the last 24 hours I’ve heard from so many young people locally about the devastating impact that the downgrading of their A-level results has had. Some have lost their places at university and others now face great uncertainty with clearing.

“This is simply unfair, especially as analysis of the results suggests that downgrading has disproportionately hit young people who could be from disadvantaged backgrounds or from schools which have struggled in the past.

“I know from speaking to local headteachers that they too are devastated about the impact this has on their students.

“The Government knew that this crisis was brewing. I warned the Education Secretary in June about how this downgrading would be deeply damaging for schools – especially those who’ve made rapid improvements.

“That’s why I fully back the calls from Keir Starmer for the Government to follow the Scottish approach & use the teacher assessed grades as an alternative.

The Government’s downgrading of A-Level results has been a shambles – they need to fix this mess urgently”.

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Chiswick School celebrates improved A Level grades

See also: Chiswick student writes to PM after missing out on place at Cambridge