Board of Examiners warn that students can try to cheat a new grading system by submitting work that is not theirs

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Board of examiners have warned that students can try to cheat the new grading system by submitting work that is not theirs.

Schools have been told to take steps to ensure that tutors do not provide “inappropriate levels of support” to students when they finish their schoolwork, which could be the basis for their final grades this summer.

In the face of the coronavirus pandemic and the cancellation of standard exams, teachers in England are handing out grades to GCSE and A-level students based on the quality of their work throughout the year.

Teachers will be able to draw on a range of evidence in determining grades, including mock exams, courses and assessments using questions approved by the board of examiners.

Teachers will be able to draw on a range of evidence in determining grades, including mock exams, courses and assessments using questions approved by the board of examiners.

Teachers will be able to draw on a range of evidence in determining grades, including mock exams, courses and assessments using questions approved by the board of examiners.

These materials can be set up as a test, remotely if needed, or as a class or homework activity.

It comes after a huge setback from the grades awarded last year to GCSE and A-level students that were based on algorithms, leaving many students with lower than expected results, meaning some are missing out on college places.

Boards of examiners have warned that incidents where students have been teased or turned in “fabricated” work will be treated as malpractice.

Earlier this week, Ofqual, which regulates qualifications, exams and assessments in England, earned that exam boards could potentially intervene where allegations from parents or students putting undue pressure on teachers to submit higher grades are evident.

The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) has added that exam boards should be notified of students who are ‘inappropriate’ [attempting] to pressure teachers about their grades.

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, said the guidance will support schools and colleges and 'maximize fairness for our young people' taking GCSE and A-level courses

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, said the guidance will support schools and colleges and 'maximize fairness for our young people' taking GCSE and A-level courses

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, said the guidance will support schools and colleges and ‘maximize fairness for our young people’ taking GCSE and A-level courses

Credible allegations will be handled under the JCQ’s policies and procedures for alleged malpractice that could result in students losing grades or being disqualified.

The guideline reads: ‘It is possible that some students are trying to influence the judgment of their teachers about their grades. Students may try to gain an unfair advantage during the centre’s process by, for example, submitting fabricated evidence or plagiarized work. ‘

The awarding organizations will investigate cases where evidence is found not to be authentic.

Directors have voiced concerns that schools and colleges have only 12 weeks for grades to be submitted to exam boards, adding that waiting for detailed guidance on grading was “ frustrating. ”

Credible allegations will be handled under the JCQ's policies and procedures for alleged malpractice that could result in students losing grades or being disqualified.

Credible allegations will be handled under the JCQ's policies and procedures for alleged malpractice that could result in students losing grades or being disqualified.

Credible allegations will be handled under the JCQ’s policies and procedures for alleged malpractice that could result in students losing grades or being disqualified.

Directors are concerned that schools and colleges have only 12 weeks to submit grades to exam boards, adding that waiting for detailed guidance in grading is “frustrating.”

Geoff Barton, Secretary General of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said: “ It is frustrating that schools and colleges have had to wait nearly three months for detailed grading guidelines since the Education Secretary canceled exams and promised that this was unforeseen arrangements just needed a little refinement. ‘

He added that “the vast majority of parents and students are very supportive of their schools and colleges and would not consider” influencing their grades by pressuring teachers.

Incidents in which students submit 'fabricated' work are treated as malpractice

Incidents in which students submit 'fabricated' work are treated as malpractice

Incidents in which students submit ‘fabricated’ work are treated as malpractice

But we need the tiny minority who are inclined to defend their position too strongly to respect the fact that teachers and centers will make professional, evidence-based judgments in a way designed to ensure that all students are fair and equal be treated, ‘he said.

Paul Whiteman, Secretary General of the NAHT School Leaders’ Union, said the union remains disappointed in waiting three months for guidance, adding that “ it would have been much better for the government to discuss and consult much earlier. about a ‘plan B’. to avoid unnecessary confusion and worry among students. ‘

Philip Wright, director general at JCQ, said the JCQ has worked with Ofqual and the Department for Education to ensure the guidelines are published as soon as possible after a consultation.

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, said the guidance will support teachers, schools and colleges and “maximize fairness for our youth.”

“We trust educators in their decision-making, and students can be confident that they will receive grades that will allow them to move on to the next stage of their lives,” he added.