If you are a big countdown fan and switching from letters to numbers is your cup of tea, the latest national GCSE grade reform has been implemented just for you.
As you will recall, the A*-G GCSE grades are being phased out and replaced by a new 1-9 number scale.
Here is an overview of what those new grades mean in terms of old currency:
After months of consultation, the government decided that the reform would only apply to English and maths from September 2015, while it would only apply to other subjects from September 2016 (or even 2017 for Design & Technology).
As a school we have had to adapt to this reform and have responded to it:
- Departments have integrated this new 1-9 grading system as part of their assessment policies.
- Our reporting system (progress reports & Go4schools) include those changes too.
But what does this all mean to you and your child? Here is a short summary:
Key Stage 4 (Years 9, 10 & 11)
1. If your child is in Y11, it is status quo. The reform does not affect you. Results and progress will still be reported using the traditional A*-G currency across all subjects.
2. If your child is in Year 10, progress in maths and English will be reported using the new (1-9) currency while all the other subjects will still use (A*-G). This will be the case next year throughout Year 11 too. On GCSE results day (June 2017), your child will have a set of GCSE results involving two grading currencies, 1-9 for maths and English and A*-G in all other subjects.
3. If your child is in Year 9, progress will be reported using the new (1-9) structure in all subjects apart from Design & Technology (A*-G). This will be the case throughout Years 10 and 11. Your child will get GCSE results (June 2018) using the new (1-9) scale for all subjects apart from Design & Technology and some option subjects such as Business & Sociology (A*-G).
If your child is in Year 9 or 10 you should now have received their first progress report for this academic year. These reports use the new (1-9) grades for targets and predictions in the relevant GCSEs. As you will have seen in the table above, the DfE have pegged specific points on the new grading scale to the old (A-G) scale. However, at this stage there is no definitive means of matching each numeric grade to an equivalent letter grade. Therefore all targets in the new (1-9) scale have had to be set on a ‘best-estimate’ basis. As more information about the new grade structure emerges we expect that individual pupil’s targets may have to be adjusted so that we continue to provide the right level of encouragement and challenge to all.
Key Stage 3 (Years 7 & 8)
4. If your child is in Years 7 or 8, this GCSE reform does not have any short term impact. We are still using National curriculum Levels across those two years. However, by the time students start in Year 9, they will be the first two cohorts to have their progress reported using the new currency across ALL subjects and throughout Years 10 & 11.