0370 270 6000

Exam appeals guidance released

11 June 2021

Please note: the information contained in this legal update is correct as of the original date of publication.

The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) this week published the appeals guidance for grades awarded this summer. We will shortly be releasing further information on the appeals process and data protection considerations, as well as running a webinar on 7 July, but in advance of that, here are three key points to take away from the guidance.

Firstly, there are two stages to the appeals process. The stage one centre review is about checking that your centre’s procedures in arriving at the grade have been followed and that no administrative errors have occurred during the process (e.g. between two students with similar names). The second stage is where students who are still unhappy following the outcome of the stage one centre review, can request that the centre submits their appeal to the awarding organisation. It’s at this second stage that the awarding body will consider appeal arguments around academic judgement and mitigating circumstances.

Secondly, the timescales are tight. There is a deadline for students applying to higher education, who did not attain their first choice, of 16 August to make a centre review request and 23 August for a stage two (awarding organisation appeal) request to centres. There is more time for non-priority appeals with deadlines of 3 September and 17 September respectively for students. This does mean that centres are going to need to ensure their processes are robust and records are kept of students that are requesting reviews to ensure none are missed.

Finally, on stage two appeals that relate to the exercise of academic judgement, which can either be in the form of the evidence selected or the decision on the grade itself, the question for the awarding body will be whether the decision was unreasonable, not whether another proposed grade in the appeal was reasonable. This is a relatively high threshold and does mean that appeals on this basis will be difficult, albeit not impossible, for students to succeed on.

You can sign up to the webinar on 7 July here.

Training and events

10Oct

Training for Lead Safeguarding Governors and Trustees Interactive session via Zoom

This course runs over 2 x 90 minute sessions and commences with he first session at 4pm on the 10th October and then the 2nd session at 4pm on the 17th October. This tailored lead safeguarding course is designed specifically for your Lead Safeguarding Governor/Trustee. Building on our course for all governors and trustees, in this course delegates focus on the role of the Lead Safeguarding Governor/Trustee and the relationship with the DSL.

Session one: 4pm to 5.30pm on 10 October 2022 and
Session two: 4pm to 5.30pm on 17 October 2022

View event

11Oct

Autumn Regional HR Forums - Birmingham Microsoft Teams

We are pleased to invite you to join us at one of our next Regional HR Forum. The forums are aimed at those who lead the HR function in schools and academies across the nation.

View event

Focus on...

Legal updates

Data reform in the UK

Since the UK left the EU and are now able to move away from the EU data protection regime, the UK government have implemented a national data strategy with the aim of reducing the burden on organisations but maintaining a high data protection standard.

View

Published articles

Key steps to avoid falling foul of disability discrimination laws

The law around disability discrimination against pupils is not straightforward – but the reputational risk, let alone costs, of falling foul of the law are huge, so it’s worth upskilling staff whenever possible, as these two lawyers outline.

View

Employment Law – Harpur Trust v Brazel – Implications for schools webinar

On 20 July 2022, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited judgment in the case of Harpur Trust v Brazel, upholding the decision of the Court of Appeal. For those of you familiar with this case, you will know that it concerns the statutory leave requirements for part-time and part-year workers. For schools and academies whose workforce consists of a variety of types of part-time and part-year workers, this case is one that must be understood before any changes are applied. Come and join Emma Hughes, Head of HR Services as she puts questions to Ian Deakin, Employment Partner, and Sarah Linden, Senior Associate.

View

Press releases

Leading education lawyers play major role as DfE announces 10,000th academy conversion

The Department for Education (DfE) have announced that the conversion of Donisthorpe Primary School in Leicestershire on 1st September marked the 10,000th academy conversion.

View

The content on this page is provided for the purposes of general interest and information. It contains only brief summaries of aspects of the subject matter and does not provide comprehensive statements of the law. It does not constitute legal advice and does not provide a substitute for it.

Mailing list sign up

Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up