Exams and Accountability 2021

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:34 am on 3rd December 2020.

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Photo of Tim Loughton Tim Loughton Conservative, East Worthing and Shoreham 10:34 am, 3rd December 2020

I welcome the decision to retain exams, not as the best but as the least worse form of assessment. Having held a virtual roundtable with heads recently, I know that they will welcome this long-awaited clarity and the flexibility that will be given to schools that have been in areas of high covid infection, which has obviously impacted on classroom time.

May I ask the Secretary of State about A-levels and university applications? Unfortunately, other nations in the UK rushed ahead to scrap exams next year. Therefore, pupils from England applying to Scottish universities—as my son did—or to Welsh or Northern Irish ones, will be treated differently from pupils in those other nations, or from such pupils coming to English universities. How do we ensure that all will be treated equitably in this now divergent system?