Falkirk Council leader welcomes decision to upgrade pupils' results

Falkirk district pupils whose results were downgraded by the SQA are to receive new grades based solely on teacher estimates.

The SQA’s alternative certification model was put in place after exams were cancelled due to coronavirus.

Protests by affected pupils, parents and teachers from across the country over the last week have forced ministers to order the SQA to re-issue downgraded awards solely on the basis of teacher judgement, without reference to historical patterns.

The decision has been welcomed by Cecil Meiklejohn, SNP councillor and leader of Falkirk Council.

Pupils staged a protest in George Square, Glasgow over the SQA's exam marking scheme. Picture: John Devlin.

She said: “It is a positive step to see the results reviewed.

“We will see what revised results are returned by the SQA by August 21 and will be able to make a better informed comment then on behalf of our pupils.”

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Deputy First Minister John Swinney apologised to the 75,000 young people whose estimated mark was reduced by the SQA and said the downgraded awards risked “young people, particularly from working class backgrounds, may lose faith in education and form the view that no matter how hard you work, the system is against you”.

Where a teacher estimate was adjusted down by the SQA, candidates will receive the grade the teacher awarded. Pupils whose entries were adjusted up by the SQA will retain the higher grade.

The SQA will inform schools of the revised results by Friday, August 21 for schools to tell pupils. New certificates will be issued in due course.

The SQA will provide new grades to UCAS and other college and university admissions bodies, and the Scottish Government will ensure enough places at colleges and universities so all places awarded to young people can be taken up.

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