As GCSE results day approaches, I wanted to provide you with some supplementary information to help you celebrate and support your children, our students. As we have shared with you previously via our Newsletter, our students (in England) will receive a mixture of number and letter grades. English language, English literature and maths are the first subjects to use the new system, (with most other subjects adopting numbers by 2019). Eventually all GCSEs taken in England will receive numerical grades.
The new grades are being brought in to signal that GCSEs have been reformed and have more challenging content, and to better differentiate between students of different abilities.
English language, English literature and maths are the first to be graded from 9 to 1 this year.
Pupils will get A* to G grades for all other subjects this year.
Ofqual has assured schools that this year’s students will not be disadvantaged by being the first to take new GCSEs. Broadly the same proportion of students will get grades 1, 4 and 7 and above as would have got grades G, C and A and above respectively in the old system.
Fewer grade 9s will be awarded in each subject than A*s previously, rewarding exceptional performance. Other high-achieving students will get a grade 8 or 7.
A grade 4 and above is a ‘standard pass’; this is the minimum level that students need to reach in English and maths, otherwise they will need to continue to study these subjects as part of their post-16 education.
You may also hear the phrase “strong pass” to describe a grade 5.
You may have extended family members are other UK One School Campuses. Regulators in Wales and Northern Ireland are not introducing the new 9 to 1 grading scale as part of the changes to GCSEs in their jurisdictions.
All that is left to do, is to wish all our students the very best for tomorrow.