Runnymede Trust open letter: GCSE and A-Level Cancellation Arrangements

The Runnymede Trust has written an Open Letter to the Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson MP, calling for urgent action  to ensure robust and fair outcomes for the poorest and BME students in light of the cancellation of A Levels and GCSEs this summer.

The letter urges the Government to take the following steps to ensure robust and fair outcomes for the poorest and BME students: 

  • Provide teachers and schools with guidance on how to undertake Equality Impact Assessments of final grade predictions. 
  • Require teachers to contextualise the grades that they predict, by flagging the disadvantages faced by students during the Covid-19 pandemic (including access to digital devices).
  • Urge university admissions to consider carefully ‘contextualised admissions’ criteria in order to ensure that students from lower socio-economic backgrounds do not lose out from the opportunity to attend more selective universities.
  • Require all Higher Education Institutions to monitor and report on offers made on the back of school predictions by ethnic and gender group to check for any bias at the point of admissions.

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