2020-21 Academic Year

Thursday 14th Jan 2021

On 6th January 2021, Simon Lebus (Ofqual’s Chief Regulator) responded to the government’s announcement about how students’ grades will be assessed in 2021. This is detailed here.

On 13th January, 2021, Gavin Williamson (the Secretary of State for Education) wrote to Simon Lebus (Ofqual’s Chief Regulator) outlining the process to agree alternative arrangements for exams in 2021. Simon Lebus published a response on the same day. This exchange is detailed here.

The key highlights are:

  1. The government is planning to ask teachers to assess students’ grades.  They believe that a “breadth of evidence should inform teachers’ judgements”.  Teachers may be asked directly for their judgement, to set their own internal assessments, or to gather a portfolio of students’ work to evidence their capabilities. 
  2. Ofqual and the government believe that exams “are the fairest way to assess” so are exploring “externally set papers” (school-led exams rather than exam-board led exams) in order to give teachers as much evidence as possible with which to decide students’ grades.
  3. The government is concerned that students will not have sufficient knowledge to progress “onto further or higher education or employment”.  They have said that it is “vital [to] maximise the remaining opportunity for [students] to be taught for as long as possible.” 

Despite the uncertainty from the government, and no matter the outcome, Up Learn is here for you, and we are able to offer you certainty and clarity on achieving top grades this summer.

We’re expanding our money-back guarantee to keep 2021 grades included (even without exams)!

We have decided to keep 2021 grades included in our money-back guarantee, despite grades not being awarded through official exams. This will include all forms of 2021 grades, whether that is a teacher-awarded grade or a test or assessment of any kind.

How can Up Learn offer an A*-A Money Back Guarantee without exams?

Students that complete Up Learn have a high level of mastery of their subject. This is reflected in the quality of their schoolwork, homework, classroom interactions and performance in internal tests. Teachers are using performance in these areas until the end of the academic year to inform grades. As such, we (Up Learn) will be directly impacting a student’s ability to achieve the best grades this year, as in any other year.

How will this work in practice?

Normally, you’d need to complete our course to 90%+ on the date of your exam in order to qualify for the money-back guarantee.

But this year, we will allow 90%+ on the date of your internal assessment or teacher deciding your grade. All you will need to give us is some kind of reasonable proof of the date your grade is decided e.g. a screenshot of an email/message/note from your teacher or exam centre, so we can verify your score on that date.

By learning and preparing for assessments with Up Learn, you are continuing to give yourself the best chance of success this summer, no matter how grades are assessed.  We will continue to monitor reports from the government and, once more is announced, will guide you so that you can achieve maximum results in minimal time and reduce the stress on your shoulders during this difficult time.  Please continue to stay safe and healthy.

For further information, you can refer to our Terms and Conditions which still apply.