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Commenting on the announcement from the Education Minister, Kirsty Williams that GCSE, AS and A level grades will be determined by schools and colleges, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT-The Teachers' Union, said:
 
“After the necessary, but belated, decision to cancel exams this summer, teachers, school leaders and learners have been waiting anxiously for further details of what will be established in their place. It was always inevitable that some form of centre assessment process would be identified as the only possible option and this is, therefore, not surprising.
 
“It is vital that the Welsh Government recognises that teachers and school and college leaders are already working under extraordinary pressure. This will be of particular importance in relation to internal and external quality assurance measures, the details of which the NASUWT expects to be fully consulted on. 
 
“It is incumbent on the Welsh Government to make clear to schools and colleges that they will need to provide teachers and school leaders with the time and space they will require to build appropriate processes and procedures to ensure accurate assessments.  Teachers and school leaders must also be assured that they will be given unambiguous and objective criteria against which to assess candidates so that students and centres can be sure about the basis on which grades will be awarded.
 
“It remains the case that some candidates, including those who have been subject to the most disruption and those who are most vulnerable, have been especially adversely impacted by the pandemic. It is essential that all possible steps are taken to ensure that progression to further and higher education and employment pathways remains open for those young people whose studies have been the most impacted by the pandemic.”
 
Neil Butler, NASUWT National Official Wales, said:

“The devil will be in the detail. We can understand why this decision has been made but learners expect and deserve a system that will provide fair and accurate assessments of their abilities in awarding them qualifications.

“How is this going to be achieved and what are the workload implications going to be on already hard pressed teachers?

“The Welsh Government will not be able to resolve these issues without consulting fully with the profession. Teachers need to be a part of the professional dialogue going forward that will decide how this is going to work.”

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