Plaid Cymru asks Education Minister to “think again” on introducing “undue stress” with mock exams

Following the announcement by the Education Minister that end of year grades will be determined by teachers, Plaid Cymru’s Shadow Minister for Education, Siân Gwenllian MS said,

“While the decision is the right one, it is tinged with deep disappointment that this wasn’t taken a lot sooner.

“After the summer 2020 exams fiasco, Plaid Cymru recognised the need for 2021 grades to be based on teacher assessments. This would have brought early clarity over what had already been a very disrupted educational journey.

“Instead, we watched as learners from disadvantaged backgrounds were disproportionately affected by the coronavirus pandemic. We consistently made the call to scrap exams so as not to doubly disadvantage them.

“After almost half a school year has already passed, Plaid Cymru broadly welcomes the notion of Centre Determined Grades without any intervening statistical process or algorithm which was at the heart of last summer’s faulty process and subsequent fiasco.

“However the Education Minister suggests that schools may be able to use mock exams as part of the assessment framework. Any assessment that causes undue stress to pupils during such an anxious time should be avoided and I would ask the Minister to think again about that aspect.

“I look forward to seeing the details about the quality assurance and appeals process. Once again learners studying for vocational and technical qualifications are being left behind and they also need clarity as a matter of urgency.”