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Solihull School

Solihull School

Solihull A Level Grades 2020 - A Statement from The Headmaster

I would like to congratulate the Class of 2020 on their A Level results.  The headline statistics for Solihull are as follows:

  • 16% of all grades are at A*
  • 61.4% of all grades are at A* - A  
  • 76% of all grades are at A* - B grade

However, it is with great sadness that I must also express our considerable disappointment at how grades have been decided upon by the various examination boards this year.

A strong cohort of pupils deserves a strong set of results, and we submitted Centre Assessed Grades (‘recommended grades’) which were thoughtfully generated, discussed at length and backed by comprehensive and multifaceted evidence.  As you would expect, we have complied with all board, Ofqual and Government requirements in this process, and we are deeply upset and outraged at the outcome for some pupils and the school. 

Results for the school this year are the lowest they have been for several consecutive years and a large number of pupils and subjects have been downgraded from our recommendations, some pupils by more than one grade in certain subjects.  This is clearly against the stated aim of all parties to ensure that published results are in line with schools’ historic exam results data.  It is a great pity that they have been subject to sweeping alteration as part of a broad and unsubtle standardisation process.

We have started the process of pursuing the matter, and we will continue to do so over the days and weeks ahead.  We all feel very strongly that pupils should not be penalised and potentially disadvantaged in this way.  Furthermore, given that some of our pupils choose to study in Scotland, and others may be competing with pupils from Scotland for places in universities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, any difference in how grades are awarded is likely to be discriminatory in some way.

Recent media reports suggesting that mock examination grades may be used to redress downgraded outcomes are simply not good enough and very misguided.  Mock exams are taken at different times of the year by individual schools, often with resit opportunities, and many pupils improve in the time period between the mocks and the real thing, some significantly so. 

We will pursue the matter vigorously.

Mr DEJJ Lloyd