The Principal has emailed staff and students and will continue to provide regular updates. Please check your emails.
Update 27 August 12.00
Thank you for your patience over the past week as the exam board have reviewed the awarding of BTEC Level 2 and Level 3 results.
As outlined in my previous email of Wednesday 19th August, the BTEC awarding exam body Pearson announced late last Wednesday that they would be reviewing all Level 2 and Level 3 BTEC qualification grades. This announcement of a review of BTEC grades came after the initial release of BTEC Level 3 grades on Thursday the 13th of August and on the eve of release of BTEC Level 2 results scheduled for release on Thursday the 20th of August. Pearson felt that their original standardisation model applied to all BTEC qualifications had led to lower grades than students should have achieved and lacked parity with the awarding of Centre Assessment Grades to GCSE and A-level students.
Since Wednesday the 19th of August Pearson have been working to apply a new standardisation model in determining BTEC qualification grades that reflects the outcomes students deserve. In some cases, the new standardisation model is expected to result in some grades increasing.
Tomorrow (Friday 28th August), all BTEC grades will be reissued to schools and colleges. Staff at Collyer’s will then embark on a process of checking these grades before releasing them to students via My Progress on the next working day of Tuesday the 1st of September at 8am. You will be able to view your final grades on the “Exams” tab under “Results” on your My Progress page.
For BTEC Level 3 students you may be waiting to confirm your final grades with universities. The exam board Pearson will release your grades directly to UCAS. Your university will then be able to view and confirm your place via UCAS. It would be wise for you to check your UCAS page over the coming days for your updated results and to make sure that the grades showing on UCAS match the reissued grades on My Progress released on Tuesday the 1st.
All the very best with your next steps.
Update 19 August 7pm
Thank you for your patience and understanding during the issuing of your results. Please be reassured that we are responding swiftly to any new guidance as it published by the Department for Education and Ofqual.
I would like to update you on how and when you can access your final results for all courses.
Following the government’s announcement on Monday that the original teacher Centre Assessment Grades would be issued as the final result we have been waiting on exam boards to re-issue grades. You will be glad to hear that all exam boards released updated A-level grades to schools and colleges today. We have spent today checking these grades and will be releasing them to students at 8:00 am on Thursday 20th August. You will find your final results on your My Progress page under the “Exams” then “Results” tabs. In most cases students will already know their Centre Assessment Grades and therefore the updated results will not show any difference.
Where a student’s grade was increased following the exam board standardisation and release of results last Thursday, the higher grade will take precedence over the Centre Assessment Grade.
BTEC Level 3 results:
BTEC Level 3 results were released last Thursday (13th August). Whilst issues surrounding the award of A-level and GCSE results has been widely reported in the press, the determination of BTEC Level 3 grades has experienced less media coverage. BTEC Level 3 qualifications did not undergo the same process of teachers submitting one overall Centre Assessment Grade as with A-levels and GCSEs. Instead internally assessed unit results were submitted to the exam boards, and the exam boards then applied a standardisation process to project the expected outcomes for internally assessed units that had not been completed and for externally assessed units, including examined units for some qualifications. The standardisation process applied by exam boards for BTEC Level 3 qualifications was distinct from the now redundant process applied to A-levels and GCSEs.
Late this afternoon (Wednesday 19th August) exam boards have confirmed that they wish to apply the same principles outlined by Ofqual for the award of A-level and GCSEs grades to BTEC Level 3 qualifications. This will involve exam boards reviewing their standardisation processes so that all Level 3 students: BTEC and A-level are equally considered. This means that the BTEC Level 3 results that were received by students last Thursday will be reviewed and reissued by the exam board. The exam boards have confirmed that no grades will go down following the review of grades.
Exam boards generally accepted the internally assessed unit results submitted by schools and colleges. Where a BTEC Level 3 qualification has been 100% coursework there is likely to be less change in a grade following the review announced today, than for courses that involved externally assessed units and exams. Regardless, all BTEC Level 3 course results are to be reviewed so all grades are subject to change.
The exam boards have not been able to provide a date by which the reviewed grades will be released, but they have promised to work on a solution with urgency. As soon as we have received the reviewed grades we will communicate with students.
A-level and BTEC Level 3: Whilst Level 3 (A-level and BTEC Level 3) results have been reissued by the exam board, they have not yet been updated on UCAS systems. Exam boards will communicate the updated results directly with UCAS. We hope that this process will be completed with speed. If your university place is dependent upon your updated results you may choose to contact the university admissions tutor to discuss your results and course place.
BTEC Level 2:
The situation with BTEC Level 2 qualifications is very similar to that of BTEC Level 3 qualifications. Please read the BTEC Level 3 section of this email.
To bring parity to the approach taken with other Level 2 qualifications including GCSEs, the exam boards will be reviewing their award of grades for BTEC Level 2 qualifications. Unfortunately, this announcement was released late this afternoon (Wednesday 19th August). Consequently, we have been told by the exam boards not to release BTEC Level 2 results tomorrow. This will no doubt be disappointing for students who were expecting these results. The exam boards have promised to work with urgency on issuing reviewed grades. As soon as we have received the reviewed grades we will communicate with students.
GCSEs and Maths Functional Skills:
In the same manner as A-level results have been awarded this year, teachers were required to submit Centre Assessment Grades for all GCSE and Maths Functional Skills students. Teachers considered a wide evidence base and used their professional judgement in determining Centre Assessment Grades. Following Monday’s governmental announcement regarding the award of GCSE and Maths Functional Skills grades, no standardisation by exam boards will take place, instead the Centre Assessment Grades submitted by teachers will stand as the final result.
GCSE and Maths Functional Skills results will be released at 8:00 am on Thursday 20th August. Students can view their results via My Progress, on the “Exams” and then “Results” tabs.
Accessing My Progress:
There will be no access to My Progress from 9:00pm this evening (Wednesday 19th August) until 8:00 am on Thursday 20th August to allow for the update of results.
We have made changes to our IT systems since last Thursday to prevent the system being overloaded when results are released. We expect that these changes will be effective, but if you do experience problems in logging on at 8:00 am tomorrow morning, please try a little later.
Vice Principal Curriculum
Update 18 August 2020
We have all now had time to reflect on yesterday’s momentous decision by the government to revert to Centre Assessment Grades instead of standardised results using an algorithm that was clearly unfair for some schools and colleges. It is the best decision given the situation and we are delighted that our students will now receive the outcomes they deserve and be able to move on to the next stage of their lives. Thank you for your patience and support whilst we represented your concerns.
Centre Assessment Grades
We understand that final grades will be reissued towards the end of the week and will monitor for updates. In almost all cases they will be exactly the same as the Centre Assessment Grade we submitted to the exam boards back in June. In a few cases where the previously applied standardisation model may have upgraded a result, this higher grade will stand. As soon as we are able to publish these on the Exams page of MyProgress we will inform all students.
In the meantime, we have now just published our Centre Assessment Grades (CAGs) to the ‘Tracking’ page of MyProgress on the ‘Progress Review’ tab. Students will see that a column on the right of the screen now reads ‘Transfer / CAG’. For their first year of study this will show the Transfer Grade and for their second year of study the CAG.
Since results were published last Thursday we have received over 500 individual queries via phone and email. With a small team of staff it has been very difficult to reply to all of these – a situation replicated across the country in other institutions. We remain completely committed however to supporting all our students and guiding them on to their next steps.
Given that a large majority of queries were to request the CAG or appeal the amount of scaling by the exam board, we hope you will all understand that these communications no longer need a response. The CAGs have been published to all students and there has been no scaling now.
It is fully understandable that some students might feel they could have achieved a better grade if they had been able to sit exams this summer. It has been a very difficult year for all students and this will be a strong source of frustration. However the approach taken by the college in developing CAGs was in complete accordance with Ofqual’s guidance and I am confident that our teachers have exercised their professional judgement accurately and considering all the information available. These outcomes reflect the continued improvement year after year that comes from the hard work and dedication of both students and staff. Following Ofqual’s guidance, it is unfortunately not possible to appeal the CAG on the basis that teacher judgement is wrong. Students can consider sitting exams in the autumn or next summer – in both cases they should request an entry to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If students have queries about university applications or other plans for progression then we will refer these to the appropriate staff member for guidance. In most cases direct contact with the university admissions team is the best advice to see if changes can be made to your place. Universities have been asked to address queries as quickly as possible and numbers on courses have been uncapped so in most cases it should be possible to resolve your issues directly with your preferred provider.
Finally I would just like to say well done to everyone on your results and all the best for the future.
Update 17 August 2020
I am pleased to share the news that Ofqual will use Centre Assessment Grades for A levels this summer:
It is the most sensible decision given the situation and will allow students to now move on with the next stage of their lives. It means that our students will achieve their potential this summer with the grades they deserve and worked so hard for.
We will write again in more detail tomorrow morning about how we will publish the Centre Assessment Grades and provide any other relevant information.
Update regarding exam results -12th August
I hope this update finds you all well and keeping safe.
All our 2A students and a small number of our 1A students will no doubt be waiting with great anticipation to see their A Level and Vocational results tomorrow. All Level 3 results will be published as usual to MyProgress on Thursday 13th August at 8.00am. We have high expectations for your outcomes and know that you have worked incredibly hard in what has been a very difficult and challenging year.
As a reminder, all queries about results should be addressed in the first instance to our Examinations Manager at email@example.com. Depending on the nature of the enquiry they will be forwarded on to our team of senior managers who will be able to provide support and guidance via email or phone. For the safety of all of our college community, we remain closed to all visitors and will not reopen to students until 1st September for enrolment and 14th September for teaching, so please do not come into college in person to discuss results.
You will have seen in the news a change to plans for this summer’s results by the Department for Education:
Students who would like to use a valid mock result will be able to do so through the appeals process, with individuals notifying their school or college who will provide evidence of their mock results to their exam board.
We are not anticipating that this will effect a large number of students and will provide a further update once Ofqual publish their detailed guidance for this change.
After what has been a very difficult academic year, I wanted finally to commend you all for the flexibility and resilience you have shown as a Collyerian, celebrate your achievements and wish you all the best for the future.