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The NASUWT has secured £15,000 in compensation for a student teacher after a marking error in the Government’s teacher training skills test resulted in an incorrect fail grade, preventing her from proceeding with teacher training for two years.

In 2015 the trainee teacher sat the then-named QTS Teacher Training Skills test and received a fail-grade due to a marking error.

As a result, the trainee teacher was locked out of teacher training for two years, resulting in the loss of her PGCE course enrolment, bursary, and deposit for their student accommodation. Consequently, the trainee teacher was forced to find alternative employment to sustain themselves.

The marking error affected 696 candidates of the QTS Teacher Training Skills test between 2014 -2017, each marked as having not passed the exam. In 2018, it was revealed that an error in the marking system had incorrectly given fail grades to successful test candidates.

At the time, the student teacher was offered £100 in compensation. Given the extent of her losses incurred due to this error and with the support of the NASUWT, the trainee teacher rejected this offer and a subsequent offer of £1,500, following intervention from the Parliamentary Ombudsman.

Further representations from the NASUWT has now achieved a revised compensation award of £15,000 for the member from the DfE for their marking error - 150 times their initial offer of compensation.

Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT said:

“This substantially revised compensation award finally reflects the devastating impact of the DfE's marking error. But it is thoroughly disappointing that nearly 700 teachers were delayed, and perhaps even prevented, from qualifying as teachers whilst the UK is the midst of a recruitment crisis.

“The compensation award also demonstrates how vital it is to be a member of a union at every stage of your career - from the very beginning of training to your retirement and beyond."

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