Minister hints at potential further delay to vocational results

Exam boards are set to work “through the weekend and into next week” to process vocational qualification results, a minister has said, suggesting not all will be issued by tomorrow’s deadline.

In a message to providers sent out tonight, skills minister Gillian Keegan acknowledged there was a chance some students would not receive their results tomorrow as planned.

If on Friday a student who should have received their results did not, please do get in touch with the relevant awarding organisation

Following an initial delay to results last week after exam boards decided to re-grade the qualifications, Keegan promised students their results would be “reissued by next Friday so you can move on to college, uni or a job as planned”.

The Department for Education subsequently promised on Tuesday that remaining results would be “reissued by this Friday”.

But Keegan tonight urged providers whose students do not receive their results on Friday to “get in touch with the relevant awarding organisation to understand if they need any more information from you”, suggesting that some would not arrive on time.

“I know you have been working flat-out over recent weeks to provide awarding organisations with the data they need to process results but it is possible there may be some outstanding information required,” she said.

“Awarding organisations will be working through the weekend and into next week to support you, process results and make sure every student gets the results they have been waiting for.”

Here is what the DfE said on Tuesday:

In response to questions on Twitter tonight from shadow skills minister Toby Perkins, Keegan insisted the message was issued in “extreme caution to pick up any queries”.

The original delay to vocational results came after an eleventh-hour grading U-turn. Pearson, the custodian of BTECs, announced last week that the qualifications would be regraded to “apply consistency across teacher assessed internal grades”.

Although CAGs for internal units, such as coursework, are generally accepted, Pearson had this year subsequently calculated the grades for the examined units using historical performance data to “maintain overall outcomes over time”.

It followed a decision by the government to let centre-assessment grades stand for GCSEs and A-levels.

Students started receiving their vocational results on Tuesday, with all outstanding results due to be handed out by Friday.

In her message to the sector, Keegan admitted that “none of us wanted this delay”.

But she continued that it was “right that results have been reviewed and reissued where appropriate to ensure all students are treated equally.

“Critically, Ofqual has confirmed that no student will see their result downgraded as a result of this process. Where a grade has not been reissued, the original awarded grade will stand.”

The Department for Education was approached for comment.