Express readers divided on teacher assessed exam grades

After this year GCSE results were revealed people were divided on whether teacher assessed exam grades should continue.

In the absence of traditional exams teachers have assessed grades for the second year running.

The majority of Express readers who shared their opinions were against teacher assessment and said there was a risk of bias in marking.

Others said it was a more progressive way of assessing pupils’ abilities or believed a mixture of exams and teacher assessment was a good compromise.

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Hayley JH said: “I think exams are fairer because everyone has the same thing on the same day without any assistance from staff, whereas with teacher assessed grades, some schools would inflate grades or teach to the test.”

Stuart Ellison said: “If something isn’t broke don’t fix it.

“Back in the 80s you had a two tier system, if you were considered bright enough at a subject you were put on O-levels, purely exam based and carried significant weight with employers. If you weren’t considered bright enough you did CSEs, a mixture of course work and exams, if you achieved a grade 1 it was considered an equivalent of an O-level pass (A-C).

“Best of both worlds and suitable for all.”

Another reader, Jill Hickman, said teacher assessment should continue.

She said: “Teachers assess all year, know the kids and know what they have achieved.

“Teaching is about constantly measuring progress and supporting each child with their needs and capabilities.”

Claire Abelle said: “Unless you work in education, don’t comment. You have no idea. “None.

“Not a clue how detailed, professional, agonising and objective we are.”

Students from Outwood Academy City Fields are celebrating after receiving their GCSE results.

After a difficult year when students have to deal with the pandemic alongside their studies, there were scenes of joy at the Warmfield View based academy as students collected their results.

The biggest highlights for the academy came in English and maths.

Michelle Colledge-Smith, Principal at Outwood Academy City Fields, said: “The last 18 months have been unprecedented and the way the students have handled the changing circumstances has been inspirational at times.”

At Outwood Grange Academy there were highlights for the academy with 84 per cent of students achieved a grade 4 in both English and Maths and 36.5 per cent achieving 3 grade 7s or better, showing an improvement year on year.

At Outwood Academy Hemsworth there were highlights in English and maths, where 45 per cent of the students achieved a grade 5 or higher and 68 per cent achieved a grade 4 or higher.

And at Wakefield Girls High School more than three-quarters of all GCSE entries were awarded 9 - 7 grades with one-third being awarded the highly sought after grade 9.

Headteacher Heidi-Jayne Boyes said: “I have been particularly impressed by the resilience that has been demonstrated by this cohort.

“We are all incredibly proud of our GCSE students who deserve their success today. These results reflect the tenacious, committed and ambitious young people we have the privilege to inspire and work with.”