26th March 2021

Important information for Parents/Carers of Year 13 students

Dear Parents/Carers,

It is an absolute pleasure to have our Year 13 students back with us for face-to-face education and they have returned with an excellent attitude to their learning. We are proud of the exceptional levels of resilience they have shown this year.

In this communication we are providing further information for parents/carers on Teacher Assessment Grades.

Teacher Assessment Grades

As previously communicated, the government recently confirmed that in summer 2021, students taking GCSEs regulated by Ofqual, should be awarded grades based on an assessment by their teachers.

“Teachers can use a range of evidence to make a judgement of the grade they are performing at. Students should only be assessed on what they have been taught, ensuring sufficient coverage of the curriculum to enable progression. When determining the grade, teachers should reflect the standard at which the student is performing now, not their potential. Teachers should use the time remaining to balance continued teaching with any assessments they want to undertake.”

Grades will not be awarded on the basis of one piece of evidence. A teacher’s judgement will take into account a wide evidence base covering work that has already been completed and will also include work that will be completed in the coming weeks.

In Appendix A (attached to this letter) we have given further clarification on the broad plans in each subject area and also the types of evidence subjects will use. Teachers will be providing further, specific, guidance in lessons together with revision materials to support students in preparing for any assessments.

We will also circulate separately an overview of the timed assessments that will be taking place over the next half term. All timed assessments will take place in classrooms under controlled conditions. Where possible, we have endeavoured to rationalise these assessments to ensure students are not overwhelmed on any given day or in any given week.

We are still awaiting further guidance to be published by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) and also the awarding organisations; as a consequence, please be aware that plans are subject to amendment. Whilst we sincerely hope that students will not be required to isolate again, we cannot rule out this possibility; this could impact on our intended approach.

Exam Access Arrangements

Where timed assessments are used as part of the evidence profile to determine teacher assessed grades, students will be granted any approved access arrangements.

Wellbeing

We have said before: we cannot control the current situation but we can determine how we respond to the challenge. Take time to look after yourselves. Remember that there is a range of useful wellbeing links on the website:

https://www.bishopchalloner.org.uk/catholic-college/about/safeguarding/safeguarding-and-well-being

We recognise that this will be an anxious time for many of our students and so we encourage them to share their concerns and staff in school will offer their full support and guidance.

Further questions

If you have further questions about the process please don’t hesitate to contact Ms Bissett Head of Year 13 (f.bissett@bishopchalloner.bham.sch.uk) who will liaise with the relevant subject areas as necessary.

We thank parents/carers for their patience and support as we continue to negotiate these most challenging of times in education.

For our students, please be assured of the support of your teachers and the whole school community in the coming weeks.

 

 

Dr J Coughlan

Principal

Y13 TAG Documents