Why Have Universities become more Flexible with Results?

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The government has sought to reassure pupils taking GCSEs and A-levels in England that universities will “adjust accordingly” if their results are lower than expected.

 

Schools minister Will Quince said it was important to “move back to a position where qualifications maintain their value”. He added that grades will still be higher than those awarded in 2019, before the pandemic.

 

Quince’s comments come after Ofqual, the exams regulator, said that results this summer are expected to be lower than in 2020 when grades were inflated due to the pandemic.

 

Universities have already said they will take a flexible approach to admissions this year, with some institutions saying they will lower their entry requirements for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

 

The government has also said it will introduce a new “safety net” for pupils who miss out on their university place due to the pandemic.

 

In addition, Quince said the government is “looking at all options” to ensure that students who have their results downgraded by Ofqual’s algorithm are not unfairly penalised.

 

The algorithm, used to moderate grades in England this year, has come under fire from some teachers and parents, who say it is unfair and inaccurate.

 

Quince said the government is “working hard to make sure that the appeals process is as fair as possible”.

 

While the government has said it is committed to ensuring that the pandemic unfairly disadvantages no pupil, Quince acknowledged that some students would be disappointed with their results.

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“We recognise that for some young people, getting the grades they were expecting is important to them,” he said.

 

“That’s why we put in place the safety net, which is there to ensure that no young person misses out on the next stage of their education or training due to the pandemic.”

 

Quince added that the government is “committed to working with schools, colleges and universities to make sure that this summer’s results are as fair as possible”.

 

In an interview with the PA Media news agency, Quince said: “Over the past couple of years, we’ve had extraordinary times because of the pandemic, and we’ve had to take extraordinary measures.”

 

“But it is important that we move back to a position where qualifications maintain their value,” he added.

 

“I think universities will be looking at this, they’ll be talking to each other, they’ll be talking to Ofqual, and they will adjust accordingly.”

 

Quince’s comments come after Ofqual, the exams regulator, said that results this summer are expected to be lower than in 2020 when grades were inflated due to the pandemic.

 

Ofqual has also said that the algorithm used to moderate grades this year is “fair and robust”.

 

However, the algorithm has come under fire from some teachers and parents, who say it is unfair and inaccurate.

 

Quince said the government is “working hard to make sure that the appeals process is as fair as possible”.

 

What do you think of Will Quince’s comments? Are they reassuring? Let us know in the comments below.

 

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