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‘We will not be relying on an algorithm’ to replace exam results

todayJanuary 6, 2021 8

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Teacher assessment will replace the shambolic algorithm which caused exam chaos over the summer after GCSEs, AS and A-Levels were cancelled due to lockdown.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a third national lockdown on Monday night and as a result the cancellation of key summer exams and now education secretary Gavin Williamson has laid out what will happen next.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA
Education secretary Gavin Williamson. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA

Addressing the House of Commons he said: “This year we are going to put our trust in teachers and not algorithms”.

Over the summer, opting for the latter led to many students missing out on university places having received questionably low marks. The decision was then reversed.

Schools and colleges will be allowed to make judgements on whether to continue with January tests.

“We want to allow January assessments to continue where it is judged right to do so,” Mr Williamson added.

Responding to concerns over preparedness for online learning following the 11th hour u-turn on school closures he said: “We are now better prepared to deliver online learning.”

Mr Williamson said delivery of laptops and tablets “continues apace” with 750,000devices due to be delivered by end of next week.

Mobile providers will support extra internet coverage for families without access and 4G routers have been delivered by the government, he explained.

Schools should provide between three and five hours of education per day, with Ofsted checking “quality of remote education” and parents with any concerns able to report them to the watchdog.

There will also be a school meal voucher scheme for children who rely on free meals.

“The moment the virus permits all our children will be back in school… but until then we have put in place the measures needed to allow our pupils to progress,” Mr Williamson concluded.

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