Schools and Colleges: Qualification Results and Full Opening - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 1:51 pm on 2nd September 2020.

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Photo of Lord Wood of Anfield Lord Wood of Anfield Labour 1:51 pm, 2nd September 2020

My Lords, I want to take the Minister back, I am afraid, to the process leading up to the announcement of A-level results, because the process that she described is really quite extraordinary. It is not that there was no consultation between the Minister and Ofqual, it is that there was consistent regular dialogue, with questions asked and answers given, and yet the fiasco that we now know about still unfolded. It does not say much for the competence of the Minister that, despite intense scrutiny, conversation and demands for answers, we still ended up with the scale of the discriminatory fiasco that emerged. I ask again: how can it possibly be justified that the accountability and responsibility principles applying to the Permanent Secretary and the Ofqual head do not also apply to a Minister who was so embroiled in the process for weeks and months in the run-up?