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Some schools in Wales are ‘jumping the gun’ and putting in place unwieldy and workload-intensive assessment systems to support the production of GCSE and A-level grades for this summer, the NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, has warned.

Secondary teachers in some schools have reported a massive increase in workload following the introduction of detailed assessment timetables to deal with schools having to report their own centre designated grades this year.

The NASUWT has called on the Welsh Government, Qualifications Wales and the WJEC to step in and provide further clarification and guidance to schools on ensuring the process of producing grades is proportionate and manageable for teachers.

Dr Patrick Roach, NASUWT General Secretary, said:

“From the outset of the pandemic when it became clear that examinations and the normal system for awarding qualifications would not be able to go ahead as planned, the NASUWT has strongly argued for alternative provisions that are deliverable in practice, taking full account of the unprecedented pressures on teachers and school leaders and avoiding imposing excessive and unnecessary workload burdens on them.

“Teachers are fully committed to doing all they can to support students due to receive their qualifications this year, but their ability to do so will be compromised if the systems put in place are not manageable and proportionate to ensure an awarding process in which pupils, employers and the public can have confidence.”

Neil Butler, NASUWT National Official Wales, said:

“The NASUWT is concerned that some schools are ‘jumping the gun’ and putting in place unwieldy assessment timetables to garner large amounts of evidence that will not be required, is educationally unsound and which is increasing teacher workload.

“There is a lot of panic in schools that the Welsh Government, Qualifications Wales and the WJEC need to deal with urgently.”

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