More education turmoil as grades for BTec students delayed

Schools and colleges have been told not to issue BTEC results to students on Thursday following a last-minute U-turn on grading.

With less than 24 hours to go until results day, exam board Pearson asked schools and colleges not to publish level 1 and 2 results in the vocational qualifications to give them more time to recalculate the grades.

It follows the announcement that GCSE and A-level students would this year be able to receive grades based on their teachers’ estimates.

BTEC students’ grades were not included in the original announcement, but now Pearson has said it will be regrading BTECs awarded last week – as well the grades that were due to be released tomorrow.

It comes after education unions and the Labour Party called on the Government to provide clarity on why BTEC students had been left out of Monday’s grading U-turn.

A spokeswoman for Pearson, the provider of BTECs, said: ‘Following Ofqual’s announcement that A-level and GCSE students are to receive centre-assessed grades, we will be applying the same principles for students receiving BTEC results this summer.

‘No learner’s result will go down as a consequence of regrading.’

David Hughes, chief executive of the Association of Colleges (AoC), said: ‘The timing is worrying, because thousands of students were due to get their results in the morning and others have already got results which we know will not go down, but which might improve.

‘So it is vital for students that this is sorted in days rather than weeks so that students have the chance to celebrate and to plan their next steps. It is a stressful time and this delay will extend the uncertainties.’

He added: ‘Those students wanting to move onto further or higher education will be most worried about losing out on places.

‘We are in close communication with DfE, Ofqual and Pearson to particularly make sure that BTEC students applying for universities can still be treated fairly.’

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