On behalf of school governors and trustees up and down the country, NGA congratulates students receiving their results today. We commend you for your hard work and resilience after enduring so much disruption to your education. We also wish to thank our school leaders and teachers not just for their hard work, but for the immense skill and professionalism they have shown in reducing the learning disruption caused by the pandemic as much as possible.
As expected, today’s results are higher than in 2019, when students last sat summer exams, but lower than in 2021 when grades were based on assessments by teachers. However, they highlight the varying effect of the pandemic on learning and results in different schools. Those governing, whilst maintaining their commitment to ensuring good academic outcomes, are acutely aware of this and the risk of drawing direct comparisons, which are misleading and unhelpful.
While we celebrate that a record number of 425,830 students are due to take a place at university, we hope governing boards look to ensure that their school leaders and staff are supported in providing all pupils, regardless of outcome, a transition on to the next stage of their lives.
NGA has been actively engaged in conversation around exams assessments and exploring in depth whether the current exam system is fit for purpose. As an organisation, we share the opinion of our members, voiced through our examinations working group, that the 14 to 19-year-old’s examination system needs to be reformed to meet the needs of students, schools and employers in the twenty first century. Today, however, is about celebrating the achievement of students and wishing them well in the future.