We are delighted that our academies will be able to share GCSE results with young people today. These are a testament to their hard work and perseverance over many years, with the support of the great staff who work tirelessly to ensure they have a positive learning experience and be their best selves.
As a Trust we wanted to take the opportunity to explain how results were determined this year in our academies. As you know, this year’s GCSE results had to be awarded differently from usual, after exams were unable to go ahead due to Covid-19. Schools and colleges were asked to use their professional experience to make a fair and objective judgement of the grades they believed a student would have achieved had they sat their exams this year, and to submit these Centre-Assessed Grades (CAGs) to the relevant exam board.
Groups of teachers and leaders in each subject in all of our academies worked together to discuss and agree the Centre-Assessed Grade for each student on an individual basis. They took into account a wide range of available evidence, including class work, mock exams, homework, internal assessments and other records of student performance.
The intention was that the exam boards would then moderate the CAGs, to check that schools and colleges had approached this task consistently, before providing students with their final calculated grades. Unfortunately, as you will no doubt be aware, the method they used to do this proved problematic, and was likely to lead to many grades being unfairly downgraded and therefore placing the life chances of our young people at risk.
The government therefore made the decision that GCSE and A level students would be awarded whichever was higher for each subject – their CAG or their centrally calculated grade. The grades that each young person receives today will therefore be whichever is the higher of these two grades.