30th September 2021

EPI responds to the government’s plans for 2022 exams

Today [Thursday 30 September] the Department for Education and Ofqual have published their plans for next year’s GCSE and A level exams, including their approach to grading.

Responding to the plans for grading next year, David Robinson, Director of Post-16 and Skills at the Education Policy Institute (EPI) said: 

“The government and Ofqual have had to choose between a number of imperfect solutions for next year’s exams, but this approach is the fairest and most pragmatic.  

“Setting the distribution of grades for 2022 between that of 2019 and 2021 offers some protection to a cohort of students who have seen their education heavily disrupted. It avoids any sudden shifts in grades between this year group and those in the two year groups preceding them, meaning they are less likely to lose out in the labour market or upon entry to university. 

“A chief concern of ours that is yet to be addressed by the government is the large gap between students taking academic and vocational qualifications. Academic students saw far greater increases in their grades in 2020 and 2021 and may continue to do so under these plans. The government must take action and provide assurances to vocational students that they will not lose out under this system.”