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New approach to awarding top GSCE grades welcome

Commenting on Ofqual’s announcement today on how top grades 8 and 9 will be awarded in reformed GCSEs, Russell Hobby, general secretary of school leaders' union NAHT said: “We welcome the announcement today on awarding the top grades for new GCSEs. The modified approach seems the most sensible and equitable way to award those grades.

“It is disappointing that changes to the awarding of these grades in English and Maths in 2017 are being made now, when the courses have already begun. We recognise that this will align these courses with others, but any in-year changes are disruptive for both pupils and teachers. 

“We welcome the fact that Ofqual has listened to our concerns around grade standards and will appraise the approach taken to awarding annually. In our consultation response we agreed that the grade standard established in the first award should inform the standard for subsequent years, but not set a definitive and absolute measure. We are pleased Ofqual has listened to school leaders to recognise this need for flexibility.”