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Commenting on the announcements made today by Ofqual and the Department for Education on arrangements for qualifications in 2022, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, said:
 
“It is beyond disappointing that schools still do not have final confirmation of the arrangements that will be in place in case exams cannot go ahead as planned next year.
 
“The uncertainty and anxiety that has been caused by the failure to consult on and finalise these arrangements earlier cannot be underestimated. Teachers and students need to know what will be expected of them so they can make meaningful and manageable plans. However the announcement from the Government leaves teachers operating in the dark.
 
“Teachers will again be deeply frustrated that they are once more being called on to cover up the Government’s failure to put in place realistic and appropriate arrangements which will ensure fairness for pupils.
 
“The arrangements for teacher assessed grades (TAGs) used last summer created a nightmare of substantial unnecessary workload burdens for teachers and also resulted in students spending too much of their time undertaking assessments rather than focussing on learning.
 
“Many teachers reading the consultation document will be concerned that there is nothing proposed to ensure that the pressures of TAG-related assessment and moderation will not be repeated.
 
“The NASUWT again insists that robust measures and extra resources must be put in place to ensure that the unacceptable burdens generated by TAGs in 2021 are not replicated in 2022.

“Teachers cannot be expected simply to soldier on and continue to deal with the mess caused by the Government’s failure to urgently put in place appropriate assessment arrangements that will deliver fairness to all students.
 
“The NASUWT will be consulting with our members across the country; but we are clear that the measures announced today are insufficient and fail to demonstrate that Ministers have learned any lessons from the experience of the last year.

“The NASUWT has remained clear that if examinations do go ahead as planned, it is essential that adaptations to normal arrangements are made to address the disruption to learning students have faced as a result of the pandemic.
 
“While some of the measures announced today are potentially helpful, they do not go far enough. In particular, greater use should have been made of topic choice in examination papers and advance information of the focus of the content of exams should have made available as early as possible in the autumn term.”

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