Education Return and Awarding Qualifications in 2021 - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:44 pm on 1st March 2021.

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Photo of Lord Austin of Dudley Lord Austin of Dudley Non-affiliated 2:44 pm, 1st March 2021

My Lords, the risk here is not grade inflation. It is the exact opposite. It is that pupils from poor or overcrowded homes, with special needs, or from schools that provided fewer online lessons, will not get the grades that they would have if they had not missed a year’s education, and their prospects for the future will never recover. I know that the Government have provided laptops, but lots of pupils are still missing out. There is a huge difference between the amount of online teaching provided by different schools. Will the Government agree that schools and exam boards should err on the generous side and take into account a pupil’s ability and the grades they would have got had they not been robbed of a year’s proper teaching, so that they can go on to the apprenticeship or the college or the university that they would otherwise have been able to.