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Do you think A levels will go ahead as normal next year?

(148 Posts)
ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 11:26:04

Given how much education some (note the use of SOME!) year 12s and possibly going into year 13s have missed?

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PotteringAlong Mon 18-May-20 11:26:26


okiedokieme Mon 18-May-20 11:48:30

Yes, grading will be adjusted accordingly. At 16/17 they are quite capable of online learning, 50% of a level work has always been home learning

ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 11:56:09

How do you think grading will be adjusted?

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PeppaisaBitch Mon 18-May-20 12:02:51

They adjust grade boundaries to accurately reflect previous years.

ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 12:09:51

So any student who has been off school this term won't have had their learning affected do you think?

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BlueGreenYellowRed Mon 18-May-20 12:10:35

Yes, grade boundaries are adjusted every year to reflect the ability of that years cohort

ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 12:14:58

So, going ahead as normal but grade boundaries adjusted downwards if the general trend is lower grades?

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GravityFalls Mon 18-May-20 12:25:36

Well, EVERY student has been off school this term, so they have to take that into account.

Having said that, A-level students should be trying their best to keep up with work set. I'm working through the syllabus at basically the same pace - I know it's challenging but I won't have time to go back over it - I'd rather try to catch half the class up later than just sack it off and try to get everyone up to speed when we go back.

For every Y12 who is lying in and ignoring work, there's one jumping on every remote task set, doing extra reading and using this time to get ahead independently (everything I set can be done with no adult help and requires no special tech or resources other than a mobile phone and a pen and paper, so there are as few barriers to access as possible). Those students will be in a much better position next year and it's through their own hard work and energy.

ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 12:27:39

Mine is at private school and is being taught a full live online timetable. Surely the gap between schools is going to be huge? Not just private/state but proactive state schools v ones that aren't doing much? Hard to see how it can be at all fair.

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SoTiredNeedHoliday Mon 18-May-20 12:30:28

I can't wait for the announcement on this to be made for current Yr 10's and yr 12's . It's very stressful not knowing.
There must be some changes as a missed term of education can't put these students on the same footing as years ahead and below of them. Employers etc will soon forget that the 2020 and 2021 class missed a term of schooling etc

2021 assessment????

Celeriacacaca Mon 18-May-20 12:35:07

No, I don't. Not all students have the same access as others to what's being taught so they're disadvantaged through no fault of their own. Some I'm aware of are caring for younger siblings while key working parents are out working or don't have access to a laptop until the evening as homeworking parent needs it during the day.

My Y12 DD is getting on with the work and keeping up, but she's virtually self-teaching and has limited contact with her teachers. She's not on the same level playing field as others, perhaps in the private sector, who're having "normal" online lessons each day. We know when she goes back post 1st June, it'll be for an hour per subject per week, and maybe not even with her usual teachers. While that will help, she's not going to be ready in the same way as she should have been prepared for her exams.

Some schools have no chance now of getting through the curriculum so how can those missed topics be examined?

I think y10/y12 will be more severely impacted than this year's GCSE and A Level students. It's basically a mess and schools aren't being given any direction by the DfE at all to help them shape the curriculum/teaching from here on in.

Confuzzlediddled Mon 18-May-20 14:25:27

My DS is autistic so doing the work remotely is presenting a real challenge for him, he needs the routine of going to class, being with that teacher etc, in addition he has lost the extra help he gets from learning support.

I can't help him through the day as both DH and I are wfh. He will struggle even if they get back in June /July as he has no spacial awareness so would struggle with social distancing on the buses (it took from September to Feb for him to be travel trained) he wouldn't tolerate a mask if that is needed due to sensory issues.

To add to the issues I am shielded so him going out and about to get to college would mean I need to remain 6ft away from him at all times which is virtually impossible in a family home....

Lasvegas Mon 18-May-20 16:58:32

It’s a joke expecting self taught kids to take exams in summer 21. DD is doing 3 A levels once of which is a practicaL subject. Told to read text books. I’m trying to help as 2 of her subjects I did at A level myself but decades ago. I WFH all day so it’s hard being motivated in the evening, I’m one chapter ahead of her and trying to teach.

How GCSE kids manage with 9 subjects I don’t know.

DD has mock exams at home in a couple of weeks. These exams form the basis of predicted grades for university so a lot riding on it.

Head teacher sent an email warning year 12’s that if they don’t pass exams then they can’t go into year 13. But they are self taught. How are they supposed to do as well?

gleegeek Mon 18-May-20 17:11:26

My year 12 dd is doing all the work given for her 3 a-levels but is really struggling with motivation and will not contact a teacher if she's confused. Who knows how much she's actually learning??? She has exams coming up but can't focus on revision, she's also trying to do an epq and research unis but again, it all seems a bit hotch potch and disorganised. They will definitely have to do something with a-levels so they aren't at a disadvantage.

ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 17:11:56

Confuzzlediddled that sounds incredibly tough flowers

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ITonyah Mon 18-May-20 17:12:53

I think its nuts to expect teens tondo this themselves. Surely they'll have to make some sort of concessions?

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cantkeepawayforever Mon 18-May-20 21:27:56

The thing is, grade boundaries will automatically be adjusted, because each year a statistical formula is applied so that a very similar proportion of students get each grade to previous years, with some adjustment for known prior attainment of that cohort.

So say in a normal year, 76% is the A/B borderline. Next year it might be 72%, or 68%.

That adjustment doesn't need ANY changes to be made to papers or procedures - it's a statistical post-marking analysis.

A more dramatic option might be to widen the choice of, or limit the number of, topics for which questions need to be answered, to take account of material that might not have been covered.

So paper might have 'choose 2 out of the following 3 questions', whereas previously there might have been 1 question on each of 2 topics with no choice.

However, i don't think that is likely, simply because the length of gestation time for exam papers is so long!

TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross Mon 18-May-20 21:37:55

Next year's exam papers will already be written, so to change the content/format of the papers at this stage will be a major, major task.

hablar Mon 18-May-20 21:41:21

Grade boundaries will self-adjust anyway, as in all years, because the top x% will get A* and so on. The problem with this is that those who have had better online teaching this term are the ones more likely to hit those higher grades as the gap widens between these students and others who have been left to it.

VerbenaGirl Mon 18-May-20 21:43:59

Yes, with the appropriate grade boundary adjustments.

StellaDelMare Mon 18-May-20 21:44:32

I teach A Levels
A Levels are set to go ahead next year. Grade boundaries will probably drop as a result I reckon.

Appuskidu Mon 18-May-20 21:45:29


StellaDelMare Mon 18-May-20 21:46:15

I couldn't agree more with @GravityFalls

altmum Mon 18-May-20 21:46:50

We all understand grade boundaries will adjust next year but this will not take into account the hugely differing provisions in online learning between schools.

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