Year 11 & 13 Exam Information

Information for parents, carers and students in Years 11 and 13 – exam results in August 2020

I am writing to confirm arrangements for the release of your examination results in August as well as to give you access to further information on the work that has been undertaken during April, May and the beginning of June to provide exam boards with Centre Assessment Grades.

I have chosen a question and answer format as there is a lot of information to communicate.  I hope this helps you all to digest the information I am providing, understand what information we have provided exam boards with, how this was generated, how the results will be communicated in August and what will happen after this point.

Release of results

A level / Level 3 – Thursday 13th August 2020

GCSE / Level 2 – Thursday 20th August 2020

 

WeST secondary schools will all be conducting a ‘remote’ results day experience in the interests of health and safety of staff, pupils and their families.

How will I receive my results?

Results will be distributed as soon after 8am (but not before, due to an embargo) as possible on the morning of the respective results days using the student’s school email address.  In order to ensure that students receive their results in this way, they must check they can access their school email address as this is where the results transcript will be sent.

If you do not have access to school email, you can email ict@coombedean.co.uk prior to 17th July to ensure access.  Emails beyond this point will be checked only periodically prior to the two results days.

What to do if I have a question, having received my results?

For questions that can’t be answered by Ofqual guidance about the results (which we will share when it is published on the website https://www.coombedean.co.uk/year-11-13-exam-information/ and again with the results themselves), we will provide access to school staff on both results days (13th August for A level and 20th August for GCSE).

If you haven’t received your results by 10am, please email the Exams Officer, Mr Hilton – dhilton@coombedean.co.uk and we will work quickly to get your results to you.

For any questions you have, you should complete the form from the tab above.  In response to your questions and queries, we will contact you on the number you provide as soon as possible after your request.

We may make further arrangements for advice and guidance depending on the guidance on appeals and entries for the autumn exams series as this is confirmed.

Website FAQs and Key Documents

When will my results be released and how?

A level / Level 3 – Thursday 13th August 2020

GCSE / Level 2 – Thursday 20th August 2020

WeST secondary schools will all be conducting a ‘remote’ results day experience in the interests of health and safety of staff, pupils and their families.

How will I receive my results?

Results will be distributed as soon after 8am (but not before, due to an embargo) as possible on the morning of the respective results days using the student’s school email address.  In order to ensure that students receive their results in this way, they must check they can access their school email address as this is where the results transcript will be sent.

If you do not have access to school email, you can email ict@coombedean.co.uk prior to 17th July to ensure access.  Emails beyond this point will be checked only periodically prior to the two results days.

What to do if I have a question, having received my results?

For questions that can’t be answered by Ofqual guidance about the results (which we will share when it is published on this website in the appeals process or any other relevant sections), we will provide access to school staff on both results days (13th August for A level and 20th August for GCSE).

For specific questions you have related to your results or your next steps, you should complete a form accessible from the tab above (Enquiry Form), giving details of your question/request for support.  In response to your questions and queries, we will contact you on the number you provide as soon as possible after your request.  Where additional careers-related advice is required, we have a dedicated careers adviser that we have available on the following dates at the following times:

  • Thursday 13th pm (A level) – Jenny Wall is available from 12.30pm to 4.30pm.
  • Friday 14th – full day – Jenny Wall is available from 9am – 4.30pm.
  • Thursday 20th pm (GCSEs) – Fred Jenkins is available from 12.30pm – 4.30pm
  • Friday 21st – Fred Jenkins is available from 9am – 4.30pm
  • Tuesday 25th – Jenny Wall is available from 9am – 1pm
  • Wednesday 26th – Jenny Wall is available from 9am – 1pm

Both Jenny and Fred are able to offer assistance via telephone calls, email or online video interviews.   They can be contacted between the times above via email or mobile number:

Jenny Wall – jenny.wall@cswgroup.co.uk, 07786126328.

Fred Jenkins – fred.jenkins@cswgroup.co.uk, 07977250163

Students can also make use of the dedicated careers advice line:

https://www.gov.uk/careers-helpline-for-teenagers

National Careers Service helpline National Careers Service Telephone: 0800 100 900 Text messages: 07766 413 219 Textphone: 0800 096 8336 Monday to Sunday, 8am to 10pm

Exams Helpline

Contact the National Careers Service Exam Results Helpline for free advice if you’ve received exams results that weren’t as good as you were expecting.

The helpline is open from A level results day until a week after GCSE results day.

National Careers Service Exam Results Helpline: 0800 100 900

What have you provided exam boards with? Centre Assessment Grades

Following the cancellation of examinations which was announced back in March, schools were asked by the DfE and Ofqual (the exams regulator) to use their guidance to generate two pieces of information that would then be used to generate the grades that will be published in August 2020.

The Chief Regulator at Ofqual, wrote a letter for all GCSE and A level students which was published in April and can be found here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/878854/Letter_to_students_-_Summer_2020_grading.pdf

Schools were asked to provide for each exam board they had entered candidates for where they were confident they could use robust and broad evidence of performance:

1) a centre assessment grade (CAG) – this is an estimate of the grade that teachers believed was the most likely outcome that would have been achieved had the exams and any other relevant assessment taken place as normal.

2) a centre rank order – here, schools were asked to rank each student for whom they were providing a CAG based on their security within each grade.  The student ranked 1 was the most secure student and the student with the lowest ranking within a grade was the least secure.

Following the Easter break, we worked through a process of 4 ‘steps’ to generate and quality-assure the grades and rankings we had generated.  The process involved over 1500 individual grades in total across over 40 different subjects which were each submitted to the respective exams boards by the deadline of Friday 12th June.

How did you generate the centre assessment grades and provide the ranking within each grade?

The overarching aim was for teachers to emulate the grades which the exam itself would have generated.  Using records of each student’s performance over the course of study to make a professional judgement on an estimated grade, the following sources of information were used where applicable:

Learning Overview Data – the information provided by teachers for Learning Overviews communicating projected outcomes.
Classwork and bookwork
Informal assessment – completed in class and/or at home
Non-exam assessment (coursework)
Vocational moderated assessment and external units
Mock examination grades
Reasonable adjustments or access arrangements – reader or scribe, 25% extra time, SEND adjustments.
Illness or other personal circumstances – these might have affected performance in mock exams or over a period of time and should be taken into consideration when reaching a judgement
Tier of entry – For tiered subjects – 9-3 or 5-1 or grade U will put a limit on some outcomes
Performances – Where applicable (Music & Sport)
AS grades from summer 2019 – where applicable

There were 4 ‘steps’ to this process as summarised here:

Step 1 – class teachers reviewed the broad range of evidence in line with guidance from Ofqual (see above) and confirmed a centre assessment grade (CAG).  Class teachers ranked students from most secure to least secure within each grade.

Step 2 – subject leaders discussed CAGs with each class teacher in their subject area, ensured the full range of evidence had been considered and conducted the process of ranking students across their subject area.  This information was then moderated using comparative data for 2019.

Step 3 – submitted grades and rankings were reviewed by the senior leadership of the school for their subject areas as well as conducting a statistical subject moderation using a national comparison tool.  CAGs were also compared with the other secondary schools across WeST to ensure a consistent approach.

Step 4 – Grades were signed off by the Head of Centre and submitted to exam boards by the Exams Officer with the following statement:

I confirm that these centre assessment grades, and the rank order of students have been checked for accuracy, reviewed by a second member of staff (where possible) and are accurate and represent the objective and professional judgements made by my staff, that entries were appropriate for each candidate and that each candidate has no more than one entry per subject.

Having reviewed the relevant processes and data, I am confident that they honestly and fairly represent the grades that these students would have been most likely to achieve if they had sat their exams as planned, and that they have not been disclosed to either the candidate or their parent/guardian.

I understand that exam boards will conduct a statistical standardisation exercise, using a model developed with Ofqual, and that, if the profile of grades submitted is substantially different from what might be expected based on my centre’s historical results and the prior attainment of this year’s students, the grades for my centre will be adjusted to bring them into line with national standards.

Where a student would have been entitled to reasonable adjustments or access arrangements, the information submitted reflects the student’s likely achievement if they had been able to sit their examinations with the intended reasonable adjustment or access arrangement in place.

It is worth keeping in mind the following information:
  • Teachers know their students well and centres are able to assess grades with a high degree of accuracy.
  • The grades centres submitted to the exam boards were agreed by the centre following an internal quality assurance process and are not the sole responsibility of any individual teacher.
  • The standardisation model developed by Ofqual and the awarding organisations is statistical and may not reflect the grades submitted by the centre.
  • The standardisation process applied by the exam boards ensures grades awarded this year are consistent with those awarded to other cohorts in other years.
  • This was the fairest possible approach available under extreme circumstances. It is a rigorous process which means that grades awarded this year are as valid as in any other year.
  • This will allow pupils to progress to the next stage of their lives in the normal way.

Will exam boards change the grades that have been submitted?

The grades and rank orders we have submitted are currently being checked by the exam boards and will then be put through a system of statistical standardisation to ensure that they are in line with 2019 results in terms of grade distribution (i.e. number of grade 5s at GCSE or grade Cs at A level) and centre prior performance – our outcomes last year were above national averages.  The outcome of this standardisation or ‘norm referencing’ is to achieve a ‘normal curve of distribution’ which will broadly match how students performed in 2019 i.e. similar numbers of students achieving the same grades.  The infographic found using the link below or at the end of this document provides a useful overview summary of the process.

The rank order that has been provided by schools will not be changed.  The grades we have submitted as our CAGs are subject to change by the exam boards.  We won’t know which grades have changed until they are released to us under embargo on Wednesday 12th August for A level and Wednesday 19th August for GCSE.

Will you check my final grade against the CAG submitted?

As a centre, we will process the results the day before they are released to students and we will check the grades that have been awarded for any errors made when submitting either the CAG or rank order made by ourselves or made by the exam board.  We will complete this process before you receive the results and notify you when we publish your results if you are affected.  It is highly unlikely we will find any errors, but if there are any, it is expected they will be found and corrected quickly.

What Can I Appeal?

Ofqual will provide accessible information and have a helpline available to students and their parents to talk about the appeals process and any other questions.  Details will be made available by Ofqual and I will share these with you.  Current information surrounding appeals states:

  • if any student has concerns about bias, discrimination or any other factor that suggest that we as a centre did not behave with care or integrity when determining our CAGs, they can raise their concerns with us directly. We will provide a form for this process nearer the time and when the Ofqual consultation on this process has been completed (expected later in July).
  • if a student has evidence of serious malpractice, this evidence could be presented to the exam board and they would make contact with the school to investigate.

How Can I Appeal?

Ofqual will separately produce a guide for students that sets out how their grades were calculated this year and the options available if they believe their result was not properly produced. This will include Ofqual’s expectations about who can support students in understanding both the options available to them if they wish to query their result and how to access those routes. Ofqual will publish this guide by the end of July.

If I choose to take one or more exams in the autumn 2020 series confirmed by Ofqual on 20th June, which grade will stand?

The higher grade of the two will stand and students will be able to request a replacement certificate from the awarding body to show the higher of the two grades if they do improve the grade awarded in August 2020.

Where will the exams take place?  What if I have left the school?

The DfE is consulting on where exams will take place – this will either be at schools or colleges or possibly in a central venue.  As the original entering centre, entries will be made through us unless a student would prefer to sit their exam(s) at an alternative venue.

I will be in touch again to update you on further guidance as it is made available.  I hope in the meantime that the information provided here clarifies arrangements and what needs to happen to ensure access to exam results when they are published.

Autumn Exam Series

On June 30th, Ofqual published further information relating to the autumn exam series and appeals which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/ofqual-publishes-more-details-on-appeals-and-confirms-autumn-exam-arrangements.

If any candidate feels that the grade they have been awarded is not a fair reflection of the outcome they believe they would have received in August had the exams taken place as planned, they have the opportunity to either take exams in one or more subjects in the autumn exam series. The result of these exams will be based solely on examinations with the exception of Art.

JCQ have confirmed the dates for the autumn exam series:

  • GCE AS and A-level examinations start on Monday 5 October and finish on Friday 23 October
  • GCSE examinations start on Monday 2 November and finish on Monday 23 November

The deadlines for entry are:

  • (GCE AS & A-level) – 4 September
  • GCSE (except English Language and Mathematics) – 18 September
  • GCSE (English Language and Mathematics) – 4 October

https://www.jcq.org.uk/jcq-announces-examination-dates-for-the-autumn-2020-series/

Students that wish to enter for one or more exams in the autumn series will need to complete an entry request form and submit it to the Exams Officer – dhilton@coombedean.co.uk in line with the deadlines above. The form will be linked to the FAQs section ‘How do I request entry for autumn exams series 2020?’.

For A level exams, we will accept entries up to and including 3rd September.

For GCSE exams (except English Language and Maths), we will begin processing entries from Monday 7th September and we will accept entries up to and including 17th September for all GCSEs except English and Maths (3rd October for English Language and Maths).

The following document details the process for results and appeals for the summer results 2020:

Summer-2020-Results-and-Appeals-process-CDSwebsite

In order to be entered for one or more subjects in the autumn exams series, please complete the relevant form using the link below and submit to dhilton@coombedean.co.uk within the following timescales:

 Submit fromSubmit by
A level13th August3rd September
GCSE (all except English and maths)7th September17th September
GCSE English and/or Maths7th September3rd October

Coombe Dean School – GCSE entry request autumn series 2020

Coombe Dean School – A level entry request autumn series 2020

Are You Looking to Join Our Sixth Form?

We will confirm offers for all students that have applied/apply for a place to study in the 6th Form at Coombe Dean based on the centre assessment grades we provided to exam boards in June.  Confirmation letters will be included with the exam results transcript on results day.  We will not use the grades that are released on the 20th August unless they have been adjusted upwards by the exam board during their statistical adjustment.

For further details on Coombe Dean’s Post 16 provision, take a look at the centre’s dedicated website:

post16.coombedean.co.uk

Exam Information

Year 11 and 13 Exam Information
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