Shetland pupils receive new SQA results certificates

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School pupils in Shetland, who had their estimated grades changed in August, received their new certificates yesterday.

In Shetland, out of 2492 National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher teacher estimates, 640 were changed by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). Fifty of those changes resulted in upgrades to the teacher estimates and 590 of the changes resulted in pupils being awarded lower grades than their teachers had estimated.

The reinstatement of teacher estimates affects 342 pupils across Shetland who had their results downgraded and confirms upgraded results for fifty pupils.

The SQA moderation of teacher estimates was intended to maintain the integrity and credibility of the qualifications system. The process, linked to historical attainment data, resulted in over 125,000 estimates being downgraded in Scotland.

John Swinney, Cabinet Secretary for Education, announced on 11 August 2020 that the initial teacher estimates would be reinstated for downgraded results, that the upgraded results would be maintained and that a revised appeals system would be in place for schools. There have been no appeals submitted from Shetland schools.

George Smith, Chair of the Council’s Education and Families Committee, said: “The SQA put in place an alternative certification model this year in light of the cancellation of exams and our teachers carried out all the requirements asked of them. However, the national moderation process of those results adversely affected a number of pupils in Shetland. I welcome the reinstatement of teacher estimates for downgraded results, ensuring that no learners in Shetland were disadvantaged.”

Published: 9th September 2020