GCSE results day saw grades improve on last year’s results, with over half a million pupils receiving their results yesterday (Thursday 12 August).
79.1% of pupils received a grade 4 or above and 80.9% of pupils achieved 4 or above in English and 77.9% in maths. This is an increase on last year of 0.3%, 0.7% and 0.8% respectively. 7.7% of grades were at grade 9 and 30% of grades were above a grade 7.
This year’s GCSE grades were determined by their teachers, with pupils only being assessed on what they had been taught, to mitigate the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Students receiving results will have the opportunity to move on to a range of high-quality post-16 options, from A levels to vocational and technical qualifications. This is the second year that young people can move on to study T Levels, with seven new subject choices available from September, including Healthcare, Science and Onsite Construction.
Grades were checked by schools or colleges, one in five schools also had a sample of their grades checked by exam boards to give employers and universities confidence in grades.
Students can get advice about their next steps from the National Careers Service. A wide range of post-16 options is available to this cohort, from the Government’s new pioneering T levels which started last year to hundreds of high-quality apprenticeships and vocational qualifications.
The Government intends for GCSE and A level exams to go ahead next summer. Together with Ofqual they recently ran a consultation on arrangements for the assessments to recognise the disruption to students’ education during the pandemic. The proposals include choices about the topics students will be assessed on for some subjects and giving schools and colleges advanced information about the focus of the content of the exams for other subjects.
The Government has also committed to an ambitious, and long-term education recovery plan, including investment to date of over £3bn and a significant expansion of our tutoring programme to support children and young people to make up for learning lost during the pandemic.